LPGA confirms it: No China event
Monday, September 19, 2011
Mike Whan sent a memo to players on Sept. 13 confirming that the Imperial Springs LPGA event in Guangzhou, China, has been canceled. Whan told Golfweek he received word from tournament officials at 10 p.m. Monday.
“They apologized for the late cancellation,” said Whan, who didn’t want to speak further on the subject until he had a chance to meet with players at a tour-wide meeting Tuesday evening. Whan spent time walking up and down the range Tuesday afternoon chatting with players as they prepped for this week’s Navistar LPGA Classic in Prattville, Ala.
The China event was moved from its original dates of Aug. 4-7 to the week after the Solheim Cup, Sept. 29-Oct. 2. The move was less than ideal, with America’s brightest stars already planning to skip the event after a grueling week in Ireland. A Chinese government crackdown on golf-course permits was the original cause for postponement.
Juli Inkster said it was too much to ask Solheim players to compete in China. Now, strength of field is a moot point.
“This is a first-time event, and it has been shaky from the get-go,” Inkster said. “I wasn’t surprised. . . . Disappointed, but not surprised.”
For many middle-tier players, it’s another lost opportunity to earn a check. The cancellation reduces the number of 2011 tournaments to 23.