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Ryder Cup preparations force cancellation of 2014 Tour event

Colin Montgomerie had hinted that it would not be happening and, last night, official confirmation arrived that the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles will be missing from the European Tour's schedule in the Ryder Cup year of 2014.

Montgomerie, who is the chairman of the tournament, indicated to a small gathering from the press at Wednesday's Scottish PGA annual awards luncheon that the event would not be going ahead in two years' time.

With the Ryder Cup coming to the Perthshire resort in the autumn of 2014, officials at the European Tour, Gleneagles and the main tournament sponsor, Diageo, have decided to postpone the championship for one season to allow preparations for the biennial match between Europe and the USA over the PGA Centenary course to go ahead unhindered.

Given the sheer scale of the Ryder Cup operation these days, the logistical hassle of trying to organise a regular tour event in the weeks building up to the transatlantic tussle may have compromised both events.

The various parties had looked at rescheduling the Johnnie Walker Championship – it is usually staged at the end of August – but no suitable date could be found. The tournament, a regular feature on the European schedule since 1999, will be pencilled back into the diary for the 2015 campaign.

"With regret we have accepted that we have no option but to postpone the Johnnie Walker Championship for a year," said Graeme Marchbank, the tournament director. "Over the next two years we will be focusing all of our efforts on the goal of delivering the best possible Ryder Cup in 2014."

n James Byrne, currently playing on the Asian Developmental Tour, and Kris Nicol, who will be competing on the Alps Tour in 2013, have been added to the Paul Lawrie Golf Centre tour playing staff. "They join David Law, Philip McLean and Malcolm Isaacs in representing us next year," said Lawrie.

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