Next week's Hong Kong Open has been postponed amid security fears as a result of the ongoing political crisis in the region.
The move was announced by the tour's chief executive Keith Pelley this morning. It is hoped that an alternative date early in 2020 can be found for the tournament.
“The decision has been taken due to the ongoing level of social unrest in Hong Kong," said Pelley. "As the safety of our players, staff, stakeholders and everyone involved in each and every one of our tournaments around the world is our top priority, we feel this is the correct, but unfortunate, course of action.
“The European Tour thanks everyone at the Hong Kong Golf Association, the Hong Kong Golf Club and all persons associated with the Hong Kong Open for their hard work in endeavouring to stage the tournament and we look forward to hopefully returning early next year.”
Cho Minn Thant, Commissioner and Chief Executive Officer of the Asian Tour, which co-sanctions the event with the European Tour, added: “It is regrettable that the Hong Kong Open has to be postponed due to the ongoing unrest in the city.WATCH - HOW TO SHOOT LOWER SCORES
“The unpredictability of the current situation in Hong Kong makes it very challenging to sanction the tournament especially with the safety of everyone of utmost importance. However, we are optimistic that once the situation in Hong Kong stabilises, we will be in a better position to sanction the 61st edition of the Hong Kong Open in the very near future.”
The Hong Kong Open, played at Fanling CC, has been a near permanent fixture on the tour schedule since 2001, only sitting out one year in 2016.
It counts Justin Rose, Rory McIlroy, Colin Montgomerie and Padraig Harrington among its former winners.
England's Aaron Rai won the most recent edition last year, holding off fellow countryman Matt Fitzpatrick to win by a shot.