SARS forces postponement of Volvo China Golf Open

BEIJING: People who thought that the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) crisis was behind them would do well to take another look. The Volvo China Open has been rescheduled to November on account of the situation, which has over the past several months devastated the Far East.

The golf championship will now take place from 13-16 November at the Shanghai Silport Golf Club. It was scheduled for 4-7 September; but the organisers Richtone Worldwide and the China Golf Association decided to delay the proceedings.

In India, the event airs on ESPN Star Sports. The broadcaster holds the rights for the entire PGA Tour. Executive director of Richtone Alistaire Polson has been quoted in an official release saying: "The easy option would have been to cancel and come back next year. But this is China's ultimate in professional golf, its Open Championship, and there is no way that we, or Volvo, would even consider passing up the slightest opportunity to hold it this year."

The event worth US$500,000 is the only one remaining on the Chinese mainland on this year's revised Asian PGA Tour schedule. Former world junior champion, David Gleeson is a certainty to defend his crown regardless of the change of date states the release.

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