The anticipation among golf fans could not have been higher for the opening of the 109th U.S. Open Golf Tournament, but after only three hours of golf on Opening Day Thursday, June 18, play was suspended due to heavy rains that flooded the course. The thousands of fans who turned out to Bethpage Black Golf Course on Thursday to see the likes of Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson also found out yesterday that because play had already began they would not be getting a refund or rain check for when the action resumed today.
The decision to deny a refund to fans was immediately met with criticism, and as that criticism mounted, the USGA decided to change its position. USGA executive director David Fay announced Friday that ticket holders for Thursday’s opening round may have a reprieve. If the U.S. Open is forced to extend its play into Monday or a later date, tickets to Thursday’s round will be honored. The likelihood of it extending into an extra day is high, as there is plenty of rain in the forecast for the weekend.
According to the United States Golf Association policies, if a tournament is postponed or cancelled due to weather, or any other reason, there will be no refunds for the tickets as a result of a change in date or time, and any decision to give a rain check or refund is at the sole discretion of the USGA.
“Enough play occurred today that Thursday’s tickets are done,” USGA spokesman Rand Jerris told the New York Daily News. “The tickets are not for the round, they’re for the day. Friday’s tickets will be for (today).”
Play resumed this morning at 7:30 a.m. with the players who had their first rounds halted will resume where they left off. Those players who had not tied off their opening rounds will began teeing off around 10 a.m. Officials will attempt to play as much golf as possible before dark.