PGA Tour

Hurricane forces cancellation

2016-10-06 08:55
Bill Calfee (Getty)

Miami - With deadly Hurricane Matthew churning toward the Bahamas on track to the Florida coast, officials on Wednesday cancelled the Tour Championship golf tournament that was to tee off on Thursday in Jacksonville, Florida.

"It is unfortunate that we've had to cancel our season-ending event," Tour president Bill Calfee said in a statement.

"However, our first priority is the safety of our players, fans, volunteers and staff. With Hurricane Matthew on the horizon, it is critical that we make sure everyone involved with the Tour Championship has ample time to evacuate the Northeast Florida area and return home."

The tournament was to have been the culmination of a four-event playoff series on the developmental tour through which rising talents can secure playing privileges on the US PGA Tour for the 2016-17 season.

The 25 US PGA Tour cards which would have been awarded at the end of the event will now be awarded based on players' earnings through the first three playoff tournaments.

Hurricane Matthew left at least nine people dead in the Caribbean, with Haiti postponing a presidential election that was scheduled for Sunday.

Matthew hit both Haiti and Cuba as a Category Four hurricane but has since been downgraded to a three on a scale of five.

Nevertheless, Florida governor Rick Scott declared a state-wide emergency, urging those living on barrier islands and flood-prone areas to evacuate.

All along the US East Coast university officials were keeping an eye on the storm that could impact college football games that attract tens of thousands of spectators.

The NFL's Miami Dolphins posted hurricane information on their website for fans, and were monitoring the progress of the storm.

"Obviously, right now we're thinking about the people in Haiti," Dolphins chief executive Tom Garfinkel told the Miami Herald.

But with the Dolphins due to host the Tennessee Titans on Sunday, he added, "we're watching it very closely".

"We'll be prepared to react however we need to when we have more information," Garfinkel said.

Read more on:    golf

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