The U.S. PGA Tour yesterday cancelled next month's season-ending event on its Chinese feeder golf circuit in Hong Kong citing "continued demonstrations, civil unrest and safety concerns."
The Clearwater Bay Open, from October 17-20, would have been the climax of the third-tier, 14-event, PGA Tour Series-China. Instead it became the latest sporting casualty of sometimes violent mass anti-government protests. Next month's WTA Hong Kong Open featuring many of the world's top women tennis players has already been postponed and last week a horse racing meeting at the city's famous Happy Valley track was cancelled for the first time. "Due to continued demonstrations, civil unrest and safety concerns in Hong Kong, PGA Tour Series-China is cancelling the 2019 Clearwater Bay Open," said a tour statement Tuesday.
The PGA Tour Series-China has around 50 Chinese players in its 100-plus membership and works closely with the Beijing-backed China Golf Association to stage events, with only two tournaments, in Macau and Hong Kong, being hosted outside the mainland. With a large mainland entry at Clearwater Bay, which lies to the east of Hong Kong Island, there were fears that the event could be targeted by anti-Beijing protesters.