LPGA postpone three more events as ANA Inspiration rescheduled due to coronavirus

Phil Casey
The Independent

The LPGA has postponed three more tournaments due to the coronavirus pandemic and rescheduled what was intended to be the year’s first major championship.

The ANA Inspiration, which had been scheduled for 2-5 April at Mission Hills Country Club in California, will take place at the same venue from 10-13 September.

The Cambia Portland Classic in Oregon, which had been due to take place on those dates, has moved to the following week.

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The three postponed events are the Lotte Championship in Hawaii (15-18 April), the Hugel-Air Premier LA Open in Los Angeles (23-26 April) and the LPGA Mediheal Championship in California (30 April-3 May).

In a letter to players, LPGA commissioner Mike Whan wrote: “We held out on these events as long as we could, hoping conditions would improve.

“Unfortunately, the current combination of the World Health Organisation categorising COVID-19 as a pandemic, local markets implementing very aggressive event/gathering limitations, and unprecedented, broad-scale travel restrictions that impact so many of our players and caddies, made hosting an LPGA official event under these conditions simply not possible or prudent.

“I promised myself that I wouldn’t send any more cancellation/postponement emails without some positive, rescheduling news and I’m happy to report that we have been successful in rescheduling the ANA Inspiration for the week of Sept 7 at Mission Hills. With this move, the Cambia Portland Classic will shift to the week of 14 Sept. at Columbia Edgewater in Portland.

“As you can imagine, we are busy working on dates (and other changes) for postponed events. Assuming we get some relief from the COVID-19 issues soon, it’s pretty clear that the rest of the 2020 season will be quite busy and crowded.

“We are focused on giving you as many playing opportunities as we can. I will share more details about the back half of 2020 as soon as I can.

“The truth is, every time I think we’ve made a plan to address changes, it never seems to be long enough. I wish I could tell you when the LPGA Tour will resume our schedule, but the truth is, no one has those answers.

World No 2 Nelly Korda in action (Getty)
World No 2 Nelly Korda in action (Getty)

“Virtually all our events are concerned given the conditions they currently face in their respective markets. At this point, the only option is to reschedule what we can and hope the COVID-19 situation starts to improve. Trust me, patience is NOT my best quality, so this situation is hard on me, too.

“I know you deserve better and I wish I had better news to report. Again, stay tuned for updates on Fall 2020. Stay safe and stay connected with your family and friends.”

The next scheduled LPGA event is the Pelican Women’s Championship in Florida from 14-17 May.

World rankings in the men’s and women’s games will be frozen from the week ending Sunday, 15 March and “an announcement about the resumption of each respective ranking will be made in due course”.

An statement from Official World Golf Ranking read: “The Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) and Rolex Women’s World Golf Ranking (WWGR) will be paused until further notice with professional golf currently inactive due to the global threat posed by Coronavirus (COVID-19).

“The Governing Boards of the OWGR and WWGR have decided that the rankings will be frozen at Week 11 (the week ending 15 and 16 March 2020) and will continue to monitor the impact of Coronavirus COVID-19.

“An announcement about the resumption of each respective ranking will be made in due course.”

PA

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