Augusta National: No spectators on course for Masters
The Masters Tournament will be played in November without any spectators or guests on the course.
Fred Ridley, the chairman of Augusta National Golf Club, made the announcement on Wednesday. Originally scheduled for April, the Masters will be played Nov. 9-15 at the Georgia course.
"Since our initial announcement to postpone the 2020 Masters, we have remained committed to a rescheduled Tournament in November while continually examining how best to host a global sporting event amid this pandemic," Ridley said. "As we have considered the issues facing us, the health and safety of everyone associated with the Masters always has been our first and most important priority.
"Throughout this process, we have consulted with health officials and a variety of subject matter experts. Ultimately, we determined that the potential risks of welcoming patrons and guests to our grounds in November are simply too significant to overcome."
Georgia has experienced a spike in COVID-19 cases this summer and reported 137 deaths on Tuesday, a record for the state. With more than 222,000 reported cases since the coronavirus pandemic began in March, Georgia ranks fifth in the nation.
"Even in the current circumstances, staging the Masters without patrons is deeply disappointing," Ridley continued. "The guests who come to Augusta each spring from around the world are a key component to making the Tournament so special. Augusta National has the responsibility, however, to understand and accept the challenges associated with this virus and take the necessary precautions to conduct all aspects of the Tournament in a safe manner. We look forward to the day when we can welcome all of our patrons back, hopefully in April 2021."