Golf’s four major championships will look quite different this year ... the ones that take place at all, that is.
The new dates, announced Monday morning by many of golf’s major organizing bodies, are as follows:
Masters: Nov. 9-15, Augusta National, Georgia
PGA Championship: Aug. 3-9, TPC Harding Park, California
U.S. Open: Sept. 14-20, Winged Foot, New York
Open Championship: Canceled
The R&A has officially struck the event from the calendar this year; it will be played at Royal St. Georges in 2021. The 150th Open, slated to take place next year at St. Andrews, will now take place in 2022. This is the first Open to be canceled since 1945.
The R&A has decided to cancel The Open in 2020 due to the current Covid-19 pandemic. The 149th Open will now be played at Royal St George’s from 11-18 July 2021 and The 150th Open at St Andrews from 10-17 July 2022. Full Statement: https://t.co/iZ3HiU7wwV pic.twitter.com/IoqiEfs8Fu
— The R&A (@RandA) April 6, 2020
“I can assure everyone that we have explored every option for playing The Open this year,” R&A chief Martin Slumbers said in making the announcement, “but it is not going to be possible.”
The new calendar preserves the Ryder Cup weekend as originally scheduled, albeit one week after the U.S. Open. The Ryder Cup will take place at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisconsin.
The PGA Championship’s date means that the PGA Tour will move its regular-season finale, the Wyndham Championship, and all three FedEx Cup playoff events one week later. The Tour Championship will now finish on Monday, Sept. 7, Labor Day. The Tour will also attempt to reschedule some of the previously cancelled tournaments into the now-open calendar spaces once held by the U.S. Open, the Open Championship and the Olympic golf competition.
Another loss to the calendar was the 2020 Augusta National Women’s Amateur. According to Augusta officials, scheduling difficulties among many other women’s events made it impossible to reschedule the event. All amateurs who accepted an invitation to the 2020 event will be invited to the 2021 event, as long as they remain amateurs. Ticketholders of that event will be refunded; ticketholders for the Masters can use their tickets in November.
The LPGA intends to restart the week of June 15 with the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship. The LPGA also rescheduled its first two majors: the ANA Inspiration will be the week of Sept. 7, and the U.S. Women’s Open will be the week of Dec. 7.
The PGA Championship’s return August 6 is debatable; at the moment, the tournament is scheduled for San Francisco’s TPC Harding Park, but California Gov. Gavin Newsom has expressed concern about gatherings before September. Augusta National expressly referenced patrons returning to the tournament for the Masters, and hotels in Augusta have had prices for that week leap into the stratosphere in anticipation of returning galleries.
Officials from the tournaments and tours emphasized that this schedule is dependent on the advice of health officials, and could change depending on unfavorable reports from national, state or local health offices.
The full statement from Augusta National, the European Tour, the LPGA, the PGA of America, the PGA Tour, the R&A and the USGA is as follows:
“This is a difficult and challenging time for everyone coping with the effects of this pandemic. We remain very mindful of the obstacles ahead, and each organization will continue to follow the guidance of the leading public health authorities, conducting competitions only if it is safe and responsible to do so.
“In recent weeks, the global golf community has come together to collectively put forward a calendar of events that will, we hope, serve to entertain and inspire golf fans around the world. We are grateful to our respective partners, sponsors and players, who have allowed us to make decisions – some of them, very tough decisions – in order to move the game and the industry forward.
“We want to reiterate that Augusta National Golf Club, European Tour, LPGA, PGA of America, PGA TOUR, The R&A and USGA collectively value the health and well-being of everyone, within the game of golf and beyond, above all else. We encourage everyone to follow all responsible precautions and make effort to remain healthy and safe.”
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Follow him on Twitter at @jaybusbee, and contact him with tips and story ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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