PGA Tour shuts down for a month

The next scheduled event would be the Masters, set for April 9-12

The PGA has fallen into the rough along with other sports leagues and events.

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The Players Championship went from having no fans to having no players.

The PGA Tour canceled the rest of The Players Championship on Thursday night and decided to shut down its other tournaments for the next three weeks.

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Commissioner Jay Monahan announced no fans would be allowed at tour events for the next month because of the fears over the new coronavirus outbreak.

PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan speaks at a news conference at the The Players Championship golf tournament, Thursday, March 12, 2020, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. Monahan announced that the tournament will proceed without fans starting on Friday. Th

“We did everything possible to create a safe environment for our players in order to continue the event throughout the weekend,” the tour said in a statement. “But at this point — and as the situation continues to rapidly change — the right thing to do for our players and our fans is to pause.”

Monahan scheduled a new conference for Friday morning for additional details.

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The Players Championship is the flagship event of the PGA Tour that offers a $15 million purse, the richest in golf. There was no immediate word whether it would be rescheduled.

Hideki Matsuyama of Japan, follows his shot from the 13th tee, during the first round of The Players Championship golf tournament Thursday, March 12, 2020 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Also shut down were the Valspar Championship next week in the Tampa Bay area, the Dell Match Play in Austin, Texas, and the Valero Texas Open in San Antonio. The Match Play is for the top 64 players available in the world ranking, and there was some concern not all could travel to Texas for the World Golf Championships event.

The next scheduled event would be the Masters, set for April 9-12.

Augusta National's only comment regarding the coronavirus was on March 4, when the club said it was in contact with government and health officials and at that point all its events remained on the calendar.

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The LPGA Tour postponed its next three tournaments — two with title sponsors based in South Korea, another in Japan — with plans to reschedule later in the year. The final event was the LPGA's first major of the year.

LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan said on the Golf Channel telecast Thursday he was “fairly confident” the LPGA could play next week in Phoenix, and maybe even San Diego the following week without fans.

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“But can I live with it if I'm wrong? If I'm wrong, I'll regret that the rest of my life,” Whan said. “This is a decision I may not like, but I don't think I'll ever regret. I just wasn't willing to live with being wrong.”

The Associated Press contributed this this article.