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No plans to postpone 2020 Ryder Cup

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There are no plans yet to delay this September’s Ryder Cup until next year, despite reports suggesting such a move is likely.

A senior figure at the European Tour has told BBC Sport that the article in the Daily Telegraph “was inaccurate”.

The source added: “At this stage there literally is nothing more for us to say. It would be wrong to speculate.”

Ryder Cup USA had earlier tweeted reports the competition “is expected to be postponed are inaccurate”.

Padraig Harrington’s European team are due to defend the Ryder Cup against the United States, led by Steve Stricker, at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin from 25-27 September.

The men’s golf calendar has been thrown into chaos with the postponement of the first two majors of the year; next month’s Masters and May’s PGA Championship at Harding Park in San Francisco.

Hotel activity in Augusta, Georgia suggests locals are preparing for the Masters to be rescheduled for 8-11 October but there has been no official word from organisers.

The PGA of America is looking at potential August dates to play the US PGA but that could be dependant on what happens with the Tokyo Olympics.

Delaying the Ryder Cup would potentially ease inevitable calendar congestion if professional golf is able to resume in the coming months. It would also return the usually biennial match to odd years in the calendar.

The switch to even years followed the postponement of the 2001 match at The Belfry in the wake of the 9/11 attacks in the US. Ever since the Ryder Cup has been played in the same years like Olympic Games and football World Cups.

Breaking free from that cycle must be attractive because it would mean the matches would not be overshadowed by the biggest sporting competitions on the planet.

The Ryder Cup is golf’s largest event. It seems a decision on this year’s match has to be made sooner rather than later, given the intensity of the build-up to the contest commercially and in playing terms.

Qualifying processes for the two teams are in tatters given the absence of tournaments.

Delaying the Ryder Cup for 12 months would have knock-on effects for the women’s Solheim Cup, which is next due to be played in 2021.

The LPGA, meanwhile, has shut down their season for the foreseeable future. Commissioner Mike Whan is considering staging events with sponsors doubling up and sharing the backing of events when play resumes.

“Could you have two sponsors come together in one event, so instead of playing each event for $1.5m (£1.26m), you’re playing one event for $2.8m (£2.36m)?” Whan said to GolfChannel.com. “Yeah, I think you could.”

The first women’s major of the year, the ANA Inspiration, has already been called off. Whan is looking at all options to put the women’s schedule back on track as soon as possible.

“This is going to be the year of an asterisk. There’s no getting around that. To say we’ve always done something a certain way is no longer an acceptable answer.

“Everything is on the table.”

Culled from BBCSports


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