No fans will be allowed at Memorial Tournament after re-think of situation
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No fans will be allowed at Memorial Tournament after re-think of situation

There will be no fans at next week's Memorial Tournament, with the PGA Tour and tournament organizers reversing course on plans to have some 8,000 fans daily inside the gates at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio.

"Given the broader challenges communities are facing due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we need to stay focused on the No. 1 priority for our Return to Golf - the health and safety of all involved," said PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan in a release.

"While this was a difficult decision, it was one made collectively, and we are appreciative of the process undertaken to this point that will allow us to welcome on-site fans when the time is right."

The Memorial was set to be the first PGA Tour event with limited fans in attendance, with Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine approving a tournament-devised plan that would allow for up to 8,000 spectators per day -- approximately 20 percent of the tournament's normal capacity. Fans were going to have their temperature checked at entry and asked health questions. They would be expected to wear face coverings the entire time, travel on one-way corridors around the property and pay for everything without cash.

Fans were going to be able to gather in hillside areas for viewing, with officials monitoring these fan corrals for density and social distancing.

However, with Tiger Woods potentially in the Memorial field, maintaining these rules would be difficult. Further, most fans would want to follow Woods, making for a tough visual for the Tour.

The plan was to play two PGA Tour events back-to-back at Muirfield Village -- one without fans, one with them. This week's Workday Charity Open, which is replacing the John Deere Classic on the schedule, was to be played without fans, followed by the Memorial with fans.

Now there will not be a PGA Tour event with fans until at least the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational from July 30 - Aug. 2. The Barracuda Championship, played in the Reno-Tahoe area as the opposite-field event that week, has already said no fans will be allowed.

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Ryan Ballengee

Ryan Ballengee is founder and editor of Golf News Net. He has been writing and broadcasting about golf for over a decade, working for NBC Sports, Golf Channel, Yahoo Sports and SB Nation. Ballengee lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family. He used to be a good golfer.

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