The 2020 Open Championship has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic . 

The tournament was due to take place from 16-19 July at Royal St George's but the same venue will now host the 149th Open in 2021.

This is the first time since World War II that golf's original Championship, first played in 1860, has been cancelled.

Ireland's Shane Lowry won the 2019 Open at Royal Portrush and as a result, will have his reign as champion extended for a further 12 months.

"Obviously like everybody else, I'm sad and disappointed that the R&A have had to cancel this year's Open Championship," Lowry said.

"At the end of the day people's health and safety come way before any golf tournament and I'm sure the R&A have thought long and hard on this and made their decision based on everybody's safety.

"You can trust me when I say the claret jug is going to be in safe hands for another year and I look forward to seeing go all in Royal St George's in 2021."

The 150th Open, which was due to take place next year, will be played at St Andrews from 10-17 July 2022.

Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said, "Our absolute priority is to protect the health and safety of the fans, players, officials, volunteers and staff involved in The Open. We care deeply about this historic Championship and have made this decision with a heavy heart.

""We appreciate that this will be disappointing for a great many people around the world but we have to act responsibly during this pandemic and it is the right thing to do.

"I can assure everyone that we have explored every option for playing The Open this year but it is not going to be possible.

"There are many different considerations that go into organising a major sporting event of this scale. We rely on the support of the emergency services, local authorities and a range of other organisations to stage the Championship and it would be unreasonable to place any additional demands on them when they have far more urgent priorities to deal with."