Georgia Hall says lockdown plan for golf is 'massive shame'

Major winner Georgia Hall has added her voice to a chorus of calls for Prime Minister Boris Johnson to rethink plans to close England's golf courses.

Georgia Hall pictured during the second round of the 2020 KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Aronimink Golf Club. Picture: Patrick Smith/Getty Images
Georgia Hall pictured during the second round of the 2020 KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Aronimink Golf Club. Picture: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The controversial step is set to be taken on Thursday as part of a national lockdown in England aimed at tackling a second wave of Covid-19.

Under the new restrictions, golf courses and driving ranges are set to be closed until 2 December at the earliest.

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That led England Golf's CEO, Jeremy Tomlinson, to pen an open letter to the Prime Minister at the weekend in an attempt to earn a reprieve for golf.

Tomlinson has since backed that up by joining other senior administrators in signing a letter to the Prime Minister from the All-Parliamentary Group for Golf.

David Rickman, the executive director of the R&A, has also co-signed that along with PGA chief executive Robert Maxfield, as well as a number of other leading figures in the game.

“I am extremely surprised," said Hall, the 2018 Women's Open winner, of the plan to lockdown golf in England. "I don't understand at all why they are closing golf courses when they are still allowing football and sports like that.

"Golf is one sport where you don't have to be near anyone at all. You play your own ball and pick it up yourself. It's outside as well which is of massive benefit.

"Mental health is very big now and it will help a lot of people to go out still and play golf."

A petition calling for courses in England to remain open garnered over 250,000 signatures at the weekend and was supported by Nick Dougherty, the former European Tour player who now works for Sky Sports.

“It shows how many people want to be out there," said Hall, a two-time Solheim Cup player, of that. "They want to get some fresh air and play the sport they love.

“It's a massive shame and I don't really understand why courses are closing. I hope they will reopen soon.”Hall was speaking as she prepared to play in this week’s Omega Dubai Moonlight Classic, which starts on Wednesday on the Faldo Course at Emirates Golf Club.

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