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USGA cancels first two events, U.S. Open local qualifying due to coronavirus

March 17, 2020

After a week’s worth of canceled sporting events, as day-to-day life changes across America, the U.S. Open has announced it will now look different, too. Local qualifying for the U.S. Open and qualifying for the U.S. Women’s Open have been cancelled, as announced by the USGA Tuesday afternoon.

The USGA also cancelled its first two championships of the 2020 year, the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-ball (scheduled for late April)and the U.S. Amateur Four-ball (scheduled for late May).

While one week ago the USGA hoped the spread of the coronavirus could be contained by the time it would host its championship season, the status of it is increasingly in doubt. The USGA noted it will “continue to hold” the dates for the men’s and women’s U.S. Opens (held at Winged Foot and Champions Golf Club, respectively), both of which are scheduled for June.

This comes about 40 hours after the most recent guidelines from the Center for Disease Control, which advised against hosting events of 50 people or more. President Trump followed that announcement by urging Americans to not gather in groups of 10 or more.

“We will continue to monitor all available guidance and regulations from the CDC, WHO and other federal, state and local authorities to do what is in the best interests of our community,” the USGA release said.

Taken together with announcements from the PGA Tour, the PGA Championship, the Masters, LPGA Tour and other governing bodies, the golf world will look much different in 2020 than any year in recent memory.

Despite many Americans taking cover indoors, golf courses remain a place of refuge for some as they are outdoors and incorporate a basic level of social distancing. Some courses are taking particularly creative measures to keep players from grabbing pins and risk any further spread of the virus.

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