The R&A are “proceeding as planned” with operations for The Open Championship at Royal St George’s and the AIG Women’s British Open at Royal Troon despite the ravages of the coronavirus.

While the governing body has cancelled two if its international amateur events – the Student Tour Series Final at St Andrews and Carnoustie and the Girls’ Under-16 Championship at Fulford – the two majors it runs in July and August respectively are still in the diary.

A statement from The R&A read: “We are closely monitoring the constantly-moving situation in the COVID-19 pandemic and carefully following the advice issued to us by the UK Government, relevant health authorities and our medical consultants.


“We are undertaking a comprehensive evaluation of our plans to stage The 149th Open at Royal St George’s and the AIG Women’s British Open at Royal Troon, which are four and five months away respectively. This includes examining a range of scenarios for staging the championships, with our focus on proceeding as planned, as well as considering other contingency options available to us."

Martin Slumbers, chief executive of The R&A, added, “Our absolute priority is to ensure the safety of players, fans, officials, staff and all involved in our championships and that will be at the forefront of our thinking as we monitor developments.

“We have some time before we start building the infrastructure at both venues and so we are keeping the scheduled dates in place for The Open and AIG Women’s British Open at this point. We recognise that this is a rapidly changing situation and we will keep everyone informed of any changes to our plans. These are difficult times but we are bearing in mind our responsibility for what’s right for golf and most importantly for society.”

On the European Tour, meanwhile, May’s Made in Denmark event has been postponed and the Golf Sixes in Portugal has been cancelled. That brings the total number of European Tour events affected by the pandemic to 10.