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Amateur golf champs cancelled

Aussie rising star Karl Vilips at the 2019 AAC in Shanghai. (Photo: Golf Australia/Justin Falconer)

The 2020 Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship and 2020 Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The announcement is a double blow for Australia’s top male amateurs, with the 12th staging of the men’s event originally scheduled for Royal Melbourne GC from October 29.

As host country, 10 players are invited to tee it up in the biggest tournament in the Asian region, compared to a maximum of six players for visiting countries.

A replacement date for the men’s event will be announced in the future.

The women’s tournament was moved from February to October early this year following the outbreak of COVID-19. It will now be staged from 4-7 February in 2021, still at Siam CC in Thailand.

Sydney’s Grace Kim, Doey Choi and now professional Steph Kyriacou were originally selected to tee it up in Thailand, along with Queenslanders Cassie Porter, Stacey White and Kirsty Hodgkins.

“Our highest priority is the health and safety of our players, officials and everyone throughout the world involved in running these great championships,” said Taimur Amin, Chairman of the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation.

“Given the ongoing concerns and global impacts of this pandemic, we determined with our respective partners that these events unfortunately could not proceed as planned this year.

“My sympathies are with all the players who were looking forward to participating. They can rest assured that, together with our partners, we will continue to provide these life-changing opportunities when it is safe to do so.”

Brad James, Golf Australia’s General Manager – High Performance, thanked the tournament organisers for ensuring the safety of all involved.

“We’re obviously disappointed for our top male and female amateurs that they won’t get the chance to test themselves against the best players in Asia this year,” Mr James said.

“The men’s and women’s champions obviously receive incredible rewards for winning, but the experience gained by all players make the AAC and WAAP special dates on our calendar each year.

“We fully support the AGPC’s difficult decision and appreciate that they are prioritising the health and safety of all players and staff.”

Both tournaments are run by The R&A, Masters Tournament and Asia Pacific Golf Confederation.

Article first appeared on Golf Australia, 9 July 2020.

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