The 2020 PGA Championship was postponed and the road to the U.S. Open was officially detoured Tuesday amid heightened concerns over the world's coronavirus pandemic. It remains to be seen whether golf's national championship ultimately falls by the wayside as well.
The PGA Tour also announced that it had extended its suspension of play through May 17. That announcement covered all events on the PGA Tour, PGA Tour Champions, Korn Ferry Tour, Mackenzie Tour/PGA Tour-Canada, PGA Tour Latinoamerica and PGA Tour Series-China.
While the PGA of America announced that the 2020 PGA Championship, scheduled to be played May 14-17 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco, had been postponed, CEO Seth Waugh indicated that the tournament, the final major championship each golf season until it was moved to May a year ago, will be rescheduled "at a date this summer when it is once again safe and responsible to do so."
The United States Golf Association announced in a news release the cancellation "in its current form" of local qualifying for the U.S. Open, as well as qualifying for the U.S. Women's Open, which does not have a preliminary qualifying stage.
The release stated that the USGA will "look to redesign qualifying going forward as events unfold." It went on to say that the USGA will "continue to hold the dates" for the 2020 U.S. Women's Open, scheduled for June 4-7 at Champions GC in Houston, and the U.S. Open, scheduled for June 18-21 at Winged Foot GC in Mamaroneck, N.Y.
The lone U.S. Open local qualifying site in Wisconsin was scheduled for May 11 at Hidden Glen at Bentdale Farms GC in Cedarburg. A year ago, former Marquette golfer Austin Kendziorski of Germantown won the local qualifier, held in cold, rainy and windy conditions at Wild Rock GC in Wisconsin Dells.
Wisconsin was not assigned a U.S. Women's Open qualifying site. There were qualifying opportunities April 27 at the Village Links of Glen Ellyn (Ill.) and May 4 at North Oaks (Minn.) Golf Club.
At one point Tuesday, the USGA advised state association hosting qualifiers to "keep all ... qualifying sites in place" in hopes of coming up with a condensed qualifying format after May 10. Less than 90 minutes after the USGA news release was emailed, the PGA of America and the PGA Tour followed with updates to their schedules.
The USGA also announced it has canceled its first two championships on the 2020 calendar: the U.S. Women's Amateur Four-Ball, scheduled for April 25-29 at Quail Creek Country Club in Naples, Fla., and the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball, scheduled for May 23-27 at Philadelphia (Pa.) Cricket Club. These championships will not be rescheduled in 2020.
"At this time, it is premature to speculate what might occur with other 2020 USGA championships," the USGA release said. "We will continue to monitor all available guidance and regulations from the CDC, WHO and other federal, state and local authorities to do what is in the best interests of our community. We appreciate everyone's understanding and support during these unprecedented times."