Shorts permitted at Portrush but Molinari reluctant to don them

Bernie McGuire
Shane Lowry in practice at the Dell Technologies / Image from Getty Images

Shane Lowry in practice at the Dell Technologies / Image from Getty Images

Bernie McGuire

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This year’s landmark Open Championship will see an historic first with organisers of golf’s oldest Major allowing competitors to wear shorts.

The R&A have now joined the PGA Championship, the European Tour, the Asian Tour and more-recently the PGA Tour in approving the wearing of shorts during the practice rounds.

However, as common among those who have approved shorts, the rule will not apply during the four competition rounds.

The European Tour broke from tradition in 2016 to allow competitors wear shorts in the practice rounds and Pro-Ams while the PGA Championship allowed the wearing of shorts for a first occasion in last year’s championship at Bellerive in St. Louis.

The only major golfing bodies not to allow the wearing of shorts is the Masters and the USGA that conducts the staging of the US Open.

However, reigning Open Champion, Francesco Molinari, believes the poor winter-like weather that can hit The Open will see very few availing of the new dresscode.

“It’s a change in golf but I don’t see why not,” he said.”People play golf in shorts all around the world. I don’t see why we should be different. I’m aware it might take time and I don’t think it will be a priority in Portrush.

“Molinari will defend the Open Championship from the 18th to 21st July, 2019 at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland. It will be the first occasion since 1951 that The Open has been held outside of Scotland or England.

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