AAP Golf

Aust PGA Champs pushed to February

By AAP Newswire

Australia's summer of golf has taken another hit with the Australian PGA Championship's return to Brisbane rescheduled from December until February.

After seven years at Royal Pines on the Gold Coast, the European Tour-sanctioned tournament was set to return to Royal Queensland from December 3.

But organisers on Wednesday said "strict control measures" relating to COVID-19 had made it too difficult to forge ahead.

Instead they will push it into 2021, but PGA of Australia CEO Gavin Kirkman said the revised February 18-21 event could be cancelled if things don't improve by December.

It follows the postponement of November's Australian Open at Melbourne's Kingston Heath to a "suitable date earlier next year".

"The uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic makes it extremely difficult to stage events at the level we would normally expect," Kirkman said.

"Our new date will be subject to health regulations and will be reviewed again in early December, when we expect to be armed with a more accurate prediction of COVID-19's impact across the country during summer.

"At that time we will determine whether the event will proceed in February or, as a last resort, cancelled."

The tournament's revised date could have unexpected spin-offs though, particularly if followed by or preceding a rescheduled Australian Open, with the February window providing European stars with two big events before their season kicks off at home.

PGA of Australasia tournaments director Nick Dastey said the likely quarantine requirements for a December tournament didn't work in a "week-to-week travelling tour".

"In addition to playing in front of no fans, players would have potentially been required to undertake a further period of quarantine prior to or at the conclusion of the tournament," he said.

"For interstate and international players, additional quarantine measures when returning to their home location or next tournament may have also meant a further 14-day quarantine."

Usually awarded on the eve of the Championship, the crowning of the Greg Norman Medal to Australia's golfer of the year will also be rescheduled.