As life in the United States began to warp amid the coronavirus pandemic this week, sporting organisations have suspended operations and cancelled upcoming events. This includes the golf arena, highlighted by Augusta National postponing this year’s Masters and the PGA Tour calling off the Players Championship and its next three weeks of events.
However, one group standing pat – for the moment – is the USGA.
On Friday morning the governing body announced it has not made any decisions on its schedule for the 2020 season.
“The USGA has been carefully monitoring all information available regarding the Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 and remains focused on the health and safety of the USGA community, including our staff, players, officials, volunteers and spectators,” the statement says.
“We have stablished an internal task force and are communicating on a regular basis with our peers in the golf community and the broader sports world as information on this evolving issue continues to be shared. Our leadership continues to follow current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organisation and will remain vigilant in working with local and state authorities to monitor the virus and its implications for the entire USGA community.
“Our championship season begins in late April and runs through September, with the US Open being played in June, and as of today, we have not made any decisions to alter this schedule. We are committed to being proactive in updating our constituents regarding any changes and will provide more information as it becomes available. We will take action in the event there are direct impacts to our people or our championships, including our qualifiers.
The US Open is set to begin on June 18 at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York. Westchester County has been one of the epicentres of the American coronavirus outbreak, with the National Guard enforcing a containment area on the town of New Rochelle – just five minutes from Winged Foot.
Other crown jewels for the USGA include the US Women’s Open beginning on June 4 at Champions Club in Houston, the US Senior Open starting June 25 at Newport Country Club in Rhode Island, and the US Amateur on August 10 at Bandon Dunes in Bandon.