The PGA Tour is set to announce that the 2020 season will resume at the Charles Schwab Challenge in June, but without fans in attendance.
More than a month since last teeing off in a tournament, PGA Tour golfers got a clearer picture on Tuesday of when they will be able to return to the course.
The PGA Tour is going to announce this week that the 2020 season, put on hold following the first round of the Players Championship on March 12 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will resume the week of June 11-14 for the Charles Schwab Challenge, according to Golf Digest’s Brian Wacker. That tournament, originally scheduled for May, will be held at Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas.
The schedule after that is also being fixed in place. The RBC Heritage will be played the following week in the slot originally held by the U.S. Open. The first major will now be the PGA Championship the week of Aug. 6-9 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco. The U.S. Open will be held at Winged Foot in September, while Augusta National announced last week that the Masters is being moved to Nov. 12-15. The Open Championship has already been canceled for the first time since World War II.
This schedule, though, is still subject to safety and health concerns. At least for the first few tournaments, no fans will be in attendance. The status of the PGA Championship was put in doubt when California Governor Gavin Newsom announced there won’t be any large public events in his state anytime soon.
“The prospect of mass gatherings is negligible, at best, until we get to herd immunity and a vaccine,” Newsom said on Tuesday. According to public health officials, the best estimate for when a vaccine for COVID-19 will be available is 12-18 months.
Seth Waugh, CEO of the PGA of America, said on SiriusXM Radio that they are planning for three contingencies: holding the PGA with fans; playing the tournament but without spectators; or finding another course in a different state.
In the absence of golf the past month, players and fans alike have had to find other ways to keep occupied. On Sunday, instead of playing the final round at the Masters, Tiger Woods joined Jim Nantz on CBS for a replay of his 2019 win — exactly one year ago Tuesday. He even held a mock Champions Dinner at home in Florida.
Woods and the other players on tour were supposed to be coming off the Masters right now. The pandemic has thrown the sport into upheaval, but at least on Tuesday, they got a new date to look forward to.