The R&A has issued the following statement after UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement on Monday that Step 4 of the easing of restrictions will be delayed by up to four weeks and the vaccination programme accelerated to respond to the rapid spread of the Delta variant in the UK.
“Following this evening’s announcement by the Prime Minister to delay the move to Step 4 in the UK Government’s roadmap, we would like to reassure fans that we will shortly be able to confirm our arrangements for The 149th Open being held at Royal St George’s from 11-18 July.
“We are in active discussions with the UK Government and public health authorities regarding capacity levels for the Championship and hope to provide a definitive update for all ticket holders and hospitality guests in the next few days. We would like to thank all fans for their patience and support.”
R&A Chief executive Martin Slumbers had recently announced that his team were planning for an Open capacity ranging between 25% and 75% of a normal year’s crowd, however much will depend on the UK’s response to the virus.
Data suggests that the Delta variant is between 40% and 80% more transmissible than the Alpha variant and is rapidly driving up case numbers. There are currently around 8,000 cases a day, the highest since the end of February, and these are increasing by around 64% each week.
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