The Open 2020 cancelled as a result of coronavirus pandemic

Tanya Simon
April 7, 2020

The coronavirus outbreak has now reached the doors of Royal St. George's with the R&A announcing on Monday that the 149th Open Championship has been canceled.

Golf's oldest major will now be hosted at the same Sandwich venue in July 2021. "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", golf's governing bodies and tours said in a joint statement.

"Our absolute priority is to protect the health and safety of the fans, players, officials, volunteers and staff involved in the Open".

"With our country going through extremely hard times, it will be an honor for all of us at the PGA of America to hopefully help turn a page in August with the PGA Championship and September with the Ryder Cup", said Seth Waugh, chief executive of PGA America. "We rely on the support of the emergency services, local authorities and a range of other organisations to stage the championship and it would be unreasonable to place any additional demands on them when they have far more urgent priorities to deal with". We appreciate that this will be disappointing for a great many people around the world but this pandemic is severely affecting the United Kingdom and we have to act responsibly.

The British Open is the latest high-profile tournament to be axed because of the virus.

The Augusta National Women's Amateur, an event that began previous year, was canceled for 2020 but each woman who accepted an invitation to the event will be invited to compete in 2021, provided she remains an amateur.

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Ireland's Shane Lowry won last year's British Open at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland.

"This is the first time since the Second World War that golf's original Championship, first played in 1860, has been canceled", the R&A statement Monday read. "The Championship will next be played at Royal St George's in 2021".

The same field of players that would have competed this week at the Masters will be used for the November date, which comes only a few weeks after the course reopens following summer closure.

"It is a shame but there are things bigger than golf at the moment".

In more schedule shuffling, the PGA Championship at Harding Park in San Francisco was moved from May until August 6-19, and the U.S. Open at Winged Foot in NY was bumped back from June until September 17-20. The Ryder Cup remains in its original spot the week of September 22.

Ridley said organizers have targeted November 9-15 as the possible dates to hold the 2020 Masters, while also announcing the cancellation of the Augusta National Women's Amateur.

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