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Feb 3rd, 2021

R&A confirms the Open to go ahead

Hopefully, there will also be spectators at Royal St George's in July

It comes as no great surprise that the 149th Open is going ahead in 2021. The big question is whether spectators will be allowed. The event, which was due to be played at Royal St Georges in July 2020 was the COVID pandemic's biggest golf casualty.

The other three men's major events were found new berths in the 2020 schedule and went ahead with no spectators in attendance. The Open was cancelled and will try again in Sandwich, Kent between 15th and 18th July 2021.
"We will play The Open this year," Martin Slumbers, the chief executive officer of R&A, told Sky Sports. "We are certainly planning to stage The Open but clearly, at this point, there are multiple scenarios."
It will not entirely be the R&A's decision as to whether spectators will be allowed when Shane Lowry finally gets to defend the title he won way back in 2019.
"We are working with the government and health authorities, and it's certainly a lot more complex than staging a normal Open Championship," Slumber said.
"But we are going to do everything we possibly can to put on a great championship for the country. I think there's a very good possibility we will be able to have spectators but we will have to wait and see how many."
"We are balancing the health and safety of everyone involved, but I strongly believe The Open needs spectators."
The Masters is going ahead and Augusta national has announced that there will be limited spectators or patrons as the club refers to them, allowed into the event. Dustin Johnson will look to defend the green jacket less than six months since winning it last November.
The R&A will keep a close eye on the Masters and look to learn from their contemporaries at Augusta.
"I'm talking to my colleagues at Augusta. I'm watching, I'm learning and we are all doing that as we grapple what's going to be the 'new normal'," added Slumbers.
The 149th edition of golf's oldest major will take place over the classic links at Royal St George's with the 150th-anniversary event returning to the home of golf, St Andrews, in 2022.

TAGS: The Open, Royal St George's, R&A, 2021