March 19, 2020 / 3:25 PM / 14 days ago

R&A hoping to conduct The Open and women's British Open in July-August

FILE PHOTO: Golf - Women’s British Open - Woburn Golf Club, Milton Keynes, Britain - August 1, 2019 England's Bronte Law in action during the first round Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra

(Reuters) - Golf’s governing body the R&A said on Thursday that they are hoping The Open and the women’s British Open, to be held in July and August respectively, will go ahead as planned after the coronavirus outbreak brought world sport to a standstill.

The 149th Open Championship at Royal St George’s Golf Course is due to be played from July 16-19 while the women’s British Open at Royal Troon is scheduled for Aug. 20-23.

The year’s first two majors — the Masters (April 9-12) and the PGA Championship (May 14-17) — have already been postponed due to the outbreak along with several European Tour events.

“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 Women’s British Open at this point,” R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers said in a statement.

“We recognize 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.”

However, the R&A canceled two international amateur events — the Student Tour Series Final at St Andrews and Carnoustie and girls’ Under-16 Amateur Championship at Fulford — which were set to be played next month.

Globally, the coronavirus has infected more than 218,900 people and more than 8,900 have died. The United Kingdom has more than 2,600 confirmed cases with 104 deaths.

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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