Augusta, January 13: Golf superstars including Tiger Woods and defending champion Dustin Johnson are set to play in front of "limited" crowds at the Masters, it was announced on Tuesday (January 12).
Last year's tournament was delayed from April to November because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and there were no spectators allowed for that edition of the major at Augusta National.
That is set to change in 2021, says organisers, who are preparing to welcome a small number of Augusta's 'patrons' to watch the action unfold.
Full attendance was ruled out given the continuing need for social distancing, and those allowed entry must adhere to strict health protocols.
Augusta National club chairman Fred Ridley said: “Following the successful conduct of the Masters tournament last November with only essential personnel, we are confident in our ability to responsibly invite a limited number of patrons to Augusta National in April.
"As with the November Masters, we will implement practices and policies that will protect the health and safety of everyone in attendance.
"Nothing is, or will be, more important than the well-being of all involved. While we are disappointed that we will be unable to accommodate a full complement of patrons this year, we will continue our efforts to ensure that all who purchased tickets from Augusta National will have access in 2022, provided conditions improve."
Chairman Ridley has announced that @themasters intends to limit attendance in 2021.
With similar health and safety standards to those used in November, efforts are being made to include a limited number of patrons, provided it can be done safely.January 12, 2021
The Masters is scheduled to take place at its Georgia home from April 8 to 11, with Johnson looking to follow up the stunning 20-under-par performance that saw him win a first green jacket.
That was a record score for a champion in the tournament's history and came a year after former world number one Woods landed his 15th major title when he triumphed at the Masters for a fifth time.