The first round of the Evian Championship was controversially cancelled on Thursday, as tournament and tour officials decided to discount early scores and shorten the event to 54 holes after a prolonged weather delay. In essence, the tournament will restart today in Évian-les-Bains as if Thursday never happened.
“The good news is the golf course is draining like never before, we really like what’s going on with the greens and fairways,” LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said. “But with the hills and caddie bags, today we were worried about safety, everything is pretty saturated and if somebody goes down it’s not going to be a great experience.”
That may be true, but you know what’s also not a great experience? A Major event conducted over just 54 holes. At least that’s the overriding opinion from players, media members and fans following the announcement.
From Jessica Korda, who was atop the leaderboard at two under:
Yeah, I'm super pumped about it. https://t.co/69VK5eCqPU
— Jessica Korda (@Thejessicakorda) September 14, 2017
Backing her up were a share of veteran writers and personalities:
Tough that Evian coping w weather. Realize Monday (or Tuesday) finish not ideal, but 54 holes for a major? Credibility takes a hit.
— Doug Ferguson (@dougferguson405) September 14, 2017
Hope the @LPGA has a good reason for shortening the Evian to 54 holes. Push it to Monday, next month, whenever. It's a major. Supposedly.
— Ryan Lavner (@RyanLavnerGC) September 14, 2017
LPGA/LET started Evian.
Partial scores on board.
Then it rained.
Shortened to 54 holes.
And it's a major.
— Jason Sobel (@JasonSobelESPN) September 14, 2017
But worst of all was the response from fans, who couldn’t wrap their head around the call. Here’s one of many tweets:
The @EvianChamp has decided to scrap the scores from round 1 with Korda & Ryu (-2) and SH Park +6. The event will now be 54 holes.
— Tom Abbott (@TomAbbottGC) September 14, 2017
The future of women’s golf in Europe is already in a vulnerable state. Judging by the social media reaction, Thursday’s decision isn’t helping the cause.