Hazeltine Ryder clash pushed back due to Olympics

The 41st Ryder Cup at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Minnesota will be held from September 30 to October 2, 2016, the PGA of America announced yesterday.

Hazeltine Ryder clash pushed back due to Olympics

It will be the second time in six years the biennial event will finish in October, following on from Celtic Manor in 2010. Bad weather in Wales forced a Monday finish for the first time in the contest’s history.

The Ryder Cup is part of a crowded summer schedule in 2016, with just one week between the Open and US PGA due to golf’s return to the Olympic Games for the first time since 1904.

The Open will be held at Royal Troon from July 14-17 with the US PGA moving from its traditional August date for the first time since 1971. The year’s final Major will be staged at Baltusrol in New Jersey from July 28-31.

The opening ceremony of the Olympics in Rio takes place on August 5, with the golf competitions (72-hole strokeplay events for men and women) provisionally scheduled to be held from August 6-9 and 12-15.

Meanwhile, the problems continued to mount for US Ryder Cup captain Tom Watson in the early stages of the US PGA Championship yesterday, even though Tiger Woods was fit enough to take part.

Just days after withdrawing from the final round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational with a back injury, Woods declared himself pain free after nine holes of practice on Wednesday and teed off at 8:35am local time alongside Phil Mickelson and Pádraig Harrington.

But fellow American Matt Kuchar was not so fortunate, the world No 6 pulling out after suffering back spasms as he warmed up. Dustin Johnson has already declared himself unavailable so he can deal with “personal challenges”, while defending US PGA champion Jason Dufner is also struggling with a neck injury.

Kuchar, who has already sealed his place on the Ryder Cup team for Gleneagles, was replaced in the draw by first reserve John Huh, who teed off at 9:05am alongside Major champions Louis Oosthuizen and Justin Rose.

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