EVIAN LES-BAINS, France – The Evian Championship finally got off to a start Friday under a sapphire sky, but the possibility of more bad weather ahead is making LPGA officials consider contingencies.
LPGA officials confirmed players were informed Thursday night that the tour would consider shrinking the cut after the second round from the low 70 and ties to low 50 and ties to speed overall play. If there’s more bad weather ahead, a smaller field after the cut would allow the tour to complete play in a shorter window.
“It’s just an option right now,” said Heather Daly-Donofrio, LPGA senior vice president of tour operations. “We’re working on different scenarios.”
Thursday's first round was washed out. The optimum plan is to complete the first round Friday and the second round on Saturday and then make the cut. The tour is looking to finish with 36 holes on Sunday, but the weather could be a large issue.
There’s a 40 percent chance of rain Saturday, 80 percent chance of rain on Sunday and 80 percent chance of rain again Monday.
The LPGA is prepared to go to a Monday finish but the possibility of a Tuesday finish isn’t likely.
“That would be uncharted territory,” Daly-Donofrio said.
The LPGA hopes to inform players exactly what their scenarios will be by Friday night.
If Monday is the latest the LPGA wants to go, then 54 holes might have to be one of those scenarios.
While a cut to low 50 and ties would help shorten the time to complete play, it’s an option the LPGA also hopes to avoid. With a $3.25 million purse, equaling the largest on tour, Evian offers great opportunities for players to move up the money list, improve their priority status and maybe even help secure status for 2014. A cut to low 50 offers fewer paydays for tour players.