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R&A relaxes stance on wearing shorts at Open Championship

Shorts will be permitted on practice rounds and during the championship itself in extreme heat.

The Claret Jug on display at Royal Portrush (Peter Morrison/AP)
The Claret Jug on display at Royal Portrush (Peter Morrison/AP)

The world’s top golfers will be permitted to wear shorts as they practise for this summer’s Open Championship, the R&A has announced.

The tournament organisers have relaxed their dress code for the event at Royal Portrush Golf Club to allow shorts on practice days, and during final qualifying for the event.

The R&A has also opened up the possibility of shorts being permitted on championship days, if temperatures soar on Northern Ireland’s scenic Causeway Coast in July. In extreme weather conditions, the championship committee will reserve the right to permit the wearing of shorts.

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Brian Barnes wore shorts for his final practice round before the start of the 1976 Open (PA Archive/PA Images)

European Tour players can already wear shorts in pro-ams and practice rounds.

Open champion Francesco Molinari said he would welcome the chance to wear shorts as he defends the title he won at Carnoustie in 2018.

Asked if would like to see the dress code relaxed on championship days, the Italian star said: “Yeah, why not, on the shorts. I mean, obviously, it would be a change in golf. But I don’t see why not to be honest.

“There’s people playing golf in shorts all around the world. So I don’t see why we should be different. I’m aware that it might take time and we’ll see.”

Molinari joked that the championship committee would be unlikely to face extreme heat on Northern Ireland’s north coast.

“I don’t think it will be a priority in Portrush this summer,” he said.

PA

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