Organisers of the women’s Olympic golf competition have announced that they may be forced to reduce this week’s event to 54 holes due to the threat of inclement weather.
An approaching storm is forecast to hit Kasumigaseki Country Club on Saturday, during what would be the final round of the competition.
Blistering heat has also eliminated any prospect of making up lost ground on the Sunday, with the on-site medical team advising against playing more than 18 holes in one day.
According to reports, temperatures hit 111˚F during today’s first round – almost 44˚C.
In a statement, the International Golf Federation’s Competition Committee said they still intend to begin round two as scheduled but will share further information on the status of the competition at the end of the second day’s play.
Additional heat mitigation measures will also be implemented in time for the second round. Umbrellas will be made available on the first tee to all players and caddies, with roving carts providing ice and cooling towels. Volunteers will also be posted on each tee with umbrellas.
Solheim Cup star Madelene Sagstrom is the early pacesetter. The Swede opened her gold medal bid with a five-under 66 to lead by a shot from world No.1 Nelly Korda (USA) and Aditi Ashok (India).
Team GB duo Mel Reid and Jodi Ewart Shadoff are two- and three-over respectively.