US Open to be played without qualifying, fans

More from author

No plan to impose another price freeze, says Palace

MALACAÑANG said on Monday the government currently has no plans to impose another price freeze despite the...

Pagdanganan settles for 3rd, McDonald wins by 1 stroke

BIANCA PAGDANGANAN fell short of winning her first Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) title on her rookie...

Bubble rules exempt no one

NO one is above the protocols inside the Clark bubble. This was proven by...

NOW it comes down to the Masters to determine if any of golf’s majors will have fans this year.

A week before the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) Championship begins without spectators, the US Open announced Wednesday it would not have fans from September 17 to 20 at Winged Foot in New York because of health and safety concerns from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We will miss the excitement of the fans and what their presence brings to the championship,” said Mike Davis, CEO of the US Golf Association (USGA). This already was shaping up to be a different US Open.

It has been scheduled to end on Father’s Day every year since 1975, and that was disrupted by the pandemic. The US Open moved from June 18 to 21 to the third week in September as the golf schedule was entirely reconfigured to account for a three-month shutdown.

Then, the US Open had to ditch its identity as the most “open” major championship because it was neither safe nor practical to hold 18-hole and 36-hole qualifiers. Instead, the USGA crafted an all-exempt list that tried to reflect the field it normally gets.

And now the course will be missing the noise, just like the rest of golf.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said even a US Open without fans would be “a welcome sight for sports fans across the country and will help restore a sense of normalcy as we build back better than before.”

Fans will be watching on NBC, which assumed the TV rights from Fox in an agreement earlier this summer.

“This will not be a typical US Open in several respects,” said John Bodenhamer, the USGA’s senior managing director of championships. “Would it have been easier to simply cancel or even move the 2020 championship rather than play it in what has been the epicenter of the virus in our country? Possibly. But all of us at the USGA know how much the US Open matters, and we weren’t willing to give up on playing it at Winged Foot Golf Club so easily.”

The British Open was canceled in April.

The Masters moved to November 12 to 15, and Augusta National is still contemplating what it can accommodate at its private club. With the event still more than three months away, no decisions have been reached as the club weighs various options.

Meanwhile, the PGA Championship starts August 9 at Harding Park in San Francisco, the first major without fans. The PGA Tour returned June 11 without fans and has played every week. Commissioner Jay Monahan said there would not be fans the rest of the season. When asked when he expected them to return, he pointed to the US Open as the next possibility. Now that’s gone, meaning the next domestic tournament that could have spectators is October 1 to 4 in Mississippi for the Sanderson Farms Championship.

“We’re starting to get used to it,” former US Open champion Webb Simpson said. “But I think next week will feel unusual again, being a major, when there’s tens of thousands lining the fairways 10 rows deep. We’re used to that, every major being sold out long in advance.”

US Open tickets purchased directly through the USGA will be automatically refunded to the method of payment used to buy them. AP

Image credits: AP

- Advertisement -


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

More updates

SMART SOLUTIONS FOR SMARTER BUSINESS | Unleashing the fullest potential of Filipino enterprises

Cortex Enterprise Solutions was built to empower Filipino businesses to be on par with the digital...
- Advertisement -

Bubble rules exempt no one

NO one is above the protocols inside the Clark bubble. This was proven by the two Covid-19 scares—first from a referee and most recently, from a Blackwater Elite—whose false positives from a first test and negatives from two more procedures didn’t exempt them from undergoing 12 to 14 days...

Guidelines for school sports’ return released

THE Joint Agreement Order (JAO) group said on Monday that the guidelines for school sports’ return has been completed but are limited only to the training of student athletes and not competitions or leagues. The JAO group also stressed that student athletes will be allowed to return to training...

Philippine Canoe Kayak Dragonboat Federation head Uy: We’re focusing on Tokyo Olympics

NEWLY elected Philippine Canoe Kayak Dragonboat Federation (PCKDF) President Teresita Uy vowed to step up the association’s focus on qualifying at least one of its athletes to the rescheduled Tokyo Olympics. Uy made the vow following her election as the PCKDF head at the Century Park Hotel in Manila...

No arms, no issue for Pakistani snooker player

SAMUNDRI, Pakistan—Mohammad Ikram leans over the snooker table, his face at almost touching distance behind the white ball as he assesses his options, then knocks it with his bearded chin. At the other end of the table a moment later, a red ball sinks into the corner pocket.
- Advertisement -

More updates

Bubble rules exempt no one

NO one is above the protocols inside the Clark bubble. This was proven by...

In case you missed it