Coronavirus: Should golf courses stay open during the pandemic?

Professional golf has shut down for the foreseeable future due to the coronavirus pandemic, but should golf courses follow suit and close their doors?

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The PGA Tour and European Tour will return to action no earlier than late May because of the global spread of COVID-19, while the LPGA Tour and Ladies European Tour face a similar spell out of action.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Friday that all pubs, cafes, bars and restaurants – along with gyms and leisure centres – should close to combat the spread of the disease, although made no direct request for golf courses to shut.

England Golf issued a series of guidelines to ensure golf could continue in a period where everybody is being told to self-isolate, while the ‘Keep Golf Open’ campaign has been encouraging the game to stay open for all during these uncertain times.

Avoiding touching the flag, not shaking hands and refraining from using ball cleaners and rakes in the sand are among the ways suggested to limit the risk of spreading the disease, while exercise in the open air has undeniable mental and physical health benefits.

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