Vijay Singh has experienced his share of road blocks in the past year or so. He’s gone through some back problems, a torn meniscus, and other various injuries, but Vijay finally appears to be healthy. He received a pretty nice surprise yesterday when the USGA announced that they would grant the Big Fijian an exemption to play in the 2010 US Open at Pebble Beach.  Singh was supposed to participate in a qualifier on Monday after the Memorial to earn his way into the tournament, but that’s no longer needed thanks to this special exemption.

Those recent injuries appear to be the main reason he was granted this exemption. Thomas J. O’Toole Jr., chairman of the USGA’s championship committee said

“There were many compelling reasons for us to invite Vijay Singh into the field of this year’s U.S. Open, particularly his three wins in majors in the last 12 years. He has played through injuries, which caused him to drop, quite quickly this year, in the world rankings. He’s always been competitive at the U.S. Open and he is healthy and playing well again.”

I for one love the Crunchy Fijian. He has the most career victories (22) after turning 40; a record that was previously held by Sam Snead. Currently sitting at 59th in the World Rankings, Singh looks to continue his strong play at the US Open. He has seven top 10 finishes in 15 career appearances. His best finish came in 1999 when he tied for third with Tiger Woods. Payne Stewart won that year and Phil Mickelson finished second. Not a bad top three, huh? Specifically at Pebble Beach, Vijay did not participate in 1992, but finished T8 in 2000. Singh has three major championship victories in his career. And arguably, his best year was 2004 when he won nine times, including the PGA Championship. Singh is also the only player not named Tiger Woods to win the FedEx Cup Points race, which he accomplished in 2008.

Singh said

“I’m finally back to good health and really looking forward to competing at Pebble Beach. I can’t wait to tee it up.”

This will be a record 64th consecutive major tournament appearance for Vijay.

He may be an asshole, but it’s kinda hard not to like this guy. He wasn’t one of those over privileged kids who learned the game of golf at the local country club. He learned how to play by hitting coconuts on the beaches of Fiji because his family was unable to afford golf balls growing up. Singh is known for being a range rat with a very strict sense of preparation. He is extremely competitive and very precise with his practice sessions and routines. It’s good to see he’ll be chasing after it at the US Open.

In other news, Tom Watson also received a special exemption.