ANA Inspiration moves to September as LPGA Tour cancels three more events

Mission Hills Country Club, in Rancho Mirage, Palm Springs, will now host the LPGA Tour’s ANA Inspiration in September 2020
The first Major of the LPGA season – the ANA Inspiration – will now be played at Mission Hills Country Club in Palm Springs, California, from September 17-20

THE LPGA has cancelled three more of its regular tour events because of the coronavirus pandemic – and warned there may still be more disruption to come.

But the first Major of the season – the ANA Inspiration due to be held at California’s Mission Hills Country Club – has been rearranged and moved to September, having been postponed a week ago.

The event – at which the winner dives into Poppies Pond by the 18th green at the Rancho Mirage course – will now be held from September 10-13.

The Cambia Portland Classic, which had previously been scheduled for those dates, will now take place in in Portland, Oregon, from September 17-20.

But LPGA commissioner Mike Whan could not give any firm indications yet as to when the 2020 schedule was likely to recommence – with the number of COVID-19 cases growing daily in the USA, as they are in Europe.

He also admitted he was finding it hard to remain patient dealing with problems caused by the cancellations and felt his players “deserved better.”

The three new events which are not now taking place as planned are:–

•Lotte Championship, Ko Olina, Oahu, Hawaii – April 15-18

•Hugel-Air Premia LA Open, Los Angeles – April 23-26 and

•LPGA Mediheal Championship, Daly City, California – April 30-May 3.

An LPGA spokeswoman said: “Following broadened directives from the various health organisations, the LPGA Tour informed its players that three additional events on our schedule are now postponed.

“The LPGA continues to work with its partners on plans to reschedule previously postponed events and will provide further updates once those plans are finalised.”

The first LPGA events were cancelled

South Korea’s Jin Young Ko claimed her maiden Major at Mission Hills Country Club in 2019, beating Mi Hyung Lee by three shots and moving to the World No. 1 in. the process.

•The full LPGA schedule for 2020 can be seen here.

Whan says players ‘deserve better’

IN the LPGA Commissioner’s letter to players, Mr Whan explained the decision to call off three more events.

He said: “We held out on these events as long as we could, hoping conditions would improve.

LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan

“Unfortunately, the current combination of the World Health Organisation categorising COVID-19 as a pandemic, local markets implementing very aggressive event/gathering limitations, and unprecedented, broad-scale travel restrictions that impact so many of our players and caddies, made hosting an LPGA official event under these conditions simply not possible or prudent.

“I promised myself that I wouldn’t send any more cancellation/ postponement emails without some positive, rescheduling news and I’m happy to report that we have been successful in rescheduling the ANA Inspiration for the week of September 7 at Mission Hills.

“With this move, the Cambia Portland Classic will shift to the week of September 14 at Columbia Edgewater, in Portland. 

“As you can imagine, we are busy working on dates (and other changes) for postponed events.

“Assuming we get some relief from the COVID-19 issues soon, it’s pretty clear that the rest of the 2020 season will be quite busy and crowded.

“We are focused on giving you as many playing opportunities as we can. I will share more details about the back half of 2020 as soon as I can. 

“The truth is, every time I think we’ve made a plan to address changes, it never seems to be ‘long enough.’

“I wish I could tell you when the LPGA Tour will resume our schedule, but the truth is, no one has those answers.

“Virtually all our events are concerned given the conditions they currently face in their respective markets.

“At this point, the only option is to reschedule what we can and hope the COVID-19 situation starts to improve.

“Trust me, patience is NOT my best quality, so this situation is hard on me, too. 

“I know you deserve better and I wish I had better news to report. Again, stay tuned for updates on Fall 2020.

“Stay safe and stay connected with your family and friends.”

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