PGA Championship in doubt as United States prepare to clamp down on mass gatherings

The PGA Championship is in serious doubt following updated recommendations from the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

As efforts continue worldwide to contain the spread of the coronavirus, the CDC has suggested that organisers cancel or postpone events consisting of 50 or more people throughout the United States for the next eight weeks.

The PGA Championship is set to begin in nine weeks’ time on 11 May at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco, but the situation continues to develop rapidly and travel restrictions are already affecting the ability of players to get to the United States.

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In a bulletin issued on Sunday evening, the CDC wrote: “Large events and mass gatherings can contribute to the spread of Covid-19 in the United States via travellers who attend these events and introduce the virus to new communities.

“Examples of large events and mass gatherings include conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings, and other types of assemblies. These events can be planned not only by organisations and communities but also by individuals.

“Therefore, CDC, in accordance with its guidance for large events and mass gatherings, recommends that for the next eight weeks, organisers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.”

Next month’s Masters has already been postponed and the Players Championship was cancelled after the first round. PGA Tour events for the next three weeks have also been cancelled.

Six-time Masters winner Jack Nicklaus does not feel that the year’s first major will be able to be rescheduled.

“In all practicality they are postponing, but I can’t see any way they would play it at a later date,” Nicklaus said in an interview on ESPN’s SportsCenter.

“How in the world could they work it into the schedule? It wouldn’t be fair to any other tournaments that are later. I think we are probably going to miss the Masters this year, that’s just my opinion, but I think it makes logical sense.”


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