Patrick Reed is in full support of the decision taken to delay the Ryder Cup, insisting the presence of fans will make it "even sweeter" when the event takes place in 2021.

Due to the ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Ryder Cup organisers announced this week that the 2020 edition will be pushed back 12 months.

The United States will have home advantage next September when Europe travels to defend the trophy at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin, with the action unfolding between September 24-26.

While the PGA Tour has returned behind closed doors, Reed believes the Ryder Cup would not be the same if played out without a packed crowd at the course, as their presence brings out the emotion in the players.

The 29-year-old has experienced both sides of the occasion, too. He has lost twice on European soil, including in 2018 at Le Golf National, but was also a member of the USA team that triumphed in 2016 under the captaincy of Davis Love III.

Speaking after his opening round at the Workday Charity Open, Reed said: "I think probably if you asked everybody - captains, assistant captains, players, both organisations - that they're disappointed, obviously, that we're not going to play Ryder Cup this year, but at the end of the day I feel like they made the right call.

"The Ryder Cup is not the same if you have it at 50 per cent fans or if you have it at no fans. The fans are kind of what makes the Ryder Cup.

"You go in there and you - if you're the home team, you have everyone behind you, and if you're away, you want the hostility, you want people to kind of go at you. That's the fun thing about the event.

"So with either cutting fans back or not having them at all, I also don't think you'll get as much emotion out of players, and with that being said, I feel like it just wouldn't be a Ryder Cup.

"I mean, they made the right decision, and it's just going to be even sweeter whenever we're able to play next year."

The Ryder Cup will continue to take place in odd-numbers years in the future, with the 2023 tournament to be held in Italy.

Vinicius Junior has been included in Real Madrid's squad to face Deportivo Alaves on Friday.

The Brazilian winger has been in outstanding form for the LaLiga leaders since the season's restart, but his involvement in their next match was in doubt.

Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane revealed on Thursday that Vinicius had missed training to take a coronavirus test.

An initial test "went badly" - seemingly returning an anomalous result - and had to be repeated, Zidane said.

Madrid offered no update on Vinicius but named the 19-year-old among their 22-man group for the meeting with Alaves.

Zidane's side are a point ahead of Barcelona, who have played a game more.

Vinicius Junior must repeat a COVID-19 test after an apparently anomalous result, Real Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane has revealed.

Zidane was speaking ahead of his team's LaLiga match against Deportivo Alaves on Friday, where Vinicius' participation is now in doubt after a test "went badly".

The 19-year-old sat out training on Thursday and must wait to find out if he will be available to face Alaves.

"The doctors informed me that the test went badly and that we need to repeat it," said Zidane, who will be without Luka Jovic after the forward was forced to self-isolate due to coming into contact with a friend who contracted COVID-19.

When he was asked to clarify whether "badly" might mean Vinicius had tested positive for coronavirus, he replied: "Sometimes there are errors. That can happen.

"Whenever something like that happens, the player can't train. I hope it's nothing and that he can be with us for Friday's game.

"We'll have his results this afternoon."

Even if Vinicius is forced to sit out, Eden Hazard will be available as Madrid seek a victory that would give them a four-point advantage over Barcelona with three games remaining.

The Belgium playmaker was absent from the back-to-back 1-0 wins over Getafe and Athletic Bilbao and has had his debut season in the Spanish capital ruined by a broken foot.

"It is not a relapse and he has trained with us normally," Zidane said.

"I hope he will be with us in the four remaining games and then in the Champions League.

"He wants to be with us and he is not afraid, but it is the third relapse and it bothers him a little.

"There are people here who know much more than me and the image [X-ray] comes out clean, it is perfect, but the discomfort is normal after a game or strong training.

"He is not afraid and wants to help the team and tomorrow he will be with us "

Marcelo faces a scan on an unspecified complaint, but Raphael Varane is set to return at centre-back after recovering from concussion.

"We haven't won anything," Zidane said, when confronted with his team's strong position heading into the final stretch.

"Four games are remaining and tomorrow is another final.

"I am sorry to repeat myself, but there is no other choice. What we want is to continue with what we are doing."

Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhi Leonard reportedly did not travel with his team-mates to Orlando for the NBA's season restart but is expected to arrive in a few days. 

Leonard was reportedly not on the team flight to the Orlando area in Florida, where the 2019-20 campaign will resume at the Disney World complex after the season was halted in March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A two-time NBA Finals MVP, Leonard is believed to have an excused absence from the Clippers as he tends to a family matter. 

The Clippers are scheduled to spend Thursday and Friday satisfying quarantine requirements and will play their first game on July 30 against rivals the Los Angeles Lakers in the second game of a re-opening doubleheader. 

Leonard led the Clippers with 26.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and ranked second with 5.0 assists per game when the NBA season was put on hold amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The Clippers are second in the Western Conference with a 44-20 record, five and a half games behind the Lakers.    

Jon Rahm declared it to be the "smart choice" to delay the 2020 Ryder Cup, insisting the event would simply not be the same if fans were not able to attend.

Whistling Straits in Wisconsin was due to host this year's battle between the United States and Europe in September, but the continued impact of the coronavirus pandemic has led to a change in the schedule.

Instead, the next Ryder Cup will take place between September 24-26 in 2021, a move Rahm fully endorses as it will allow spectators to be present at the course.

The Spaniard made his debut in the competition two years ago, securing a point from his three matches as the European team regained the trophy at Le Golf National in France.

"I mean, I'm not shocked," Rahm told the media ahead of playing in this week's Workday Charity Open on the PGA Tour.

"I know a lot of people probably wanted to watch the Ryder Cup, but the Ryder Cup is not the Ryder Cup without spectators.  

"Right now, it doesn't seem like there's a legitimate way to make it safe for everybody, so I think it's the smart choice."

Rahm also outlined the importance of the Ryder Cup is in terms of growing the sport of golf, even if that means having to wait a little longer to experience it again.

"At the end of the day, the Ryder Cup is one of the most viewed events, sporting events in the world, so it's something that brings a lot of attention for the game of golf," he added.

"It's something that grows the game of golf throughout the world. I think it's important that it's done and it's performed and we play the way the Ryder Cup is supposed to be.  

"I'm sad we're not playing this year because I really wanted to play and I think it would have been cool to go from a U.S. Open to a Ryder Cup, but at the same time, it needs to be run the way it's supposed to be run.  

"I think it's a good decision to change it to next year."

The delay has led to a change in the long-term schedule, as the Ryder Cup will take place moving forwards in odd-numbers years. Therefore, the next staging on European soil will be in 2023.

There is also a change to the Presidents Cup, with the 2021 edition at Quail Hollow pushed back to September 2022.

The Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits has been rescheduled to take place in 2021, organisers have confirmed, with the Presidents Cup moving to 2022.

Doubts have persisted about the feasibility of staging the Ryder Cup since the outbreak of coronavirus and on Wednesday a decision was finally taken to push it back a year. 

In a statement, organisers confirmed that the decision "was based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and in conjunction with the state of Wisconsin and Sheboygan County, with the health and well-being of all involved as the top priority". 

Playing the event without fans had been mooted as an option, but instead it is now set to be held on September 21-26 next year with crowds present. 

The knock-on effect means the next edition of the competition in Europe, when Italy plays host, will move back to 2023 as it retains its biennial scheduling. 

The Presidents Cup, which was due to start on September 30 next year at Quail Hollow Club in Charlotte, will now move to September 19-25, 2022. 

Next year's Wells Fargo Championship will return to Quail Hollow Club but move to TPC Potomac for 2022 to accommodate the Presidents Cup. 

"Unlike other major sporting events that are played in existing stadiums, we had to make a decision now about building facilities to host the 2020 Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits," said PGA of America CEO Seth Waugh.

"It became clear that as of today, our medical experts and the public authorities in Wisconsin could not give us certainty that conducting an event responsibly with thousands of spectators in September would be possible.

"Given that uncertainty, we knew rescheduling was the right call. As disappointing as this is, our mandate to do all we can to safeguard public health is what matters most.

"The spectators who support both the U.S. and European sides are what make the Ryder Cup such a unique and compelling event and playing without them was not a realistic option."

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said: "With the uncertainty of the current climate, we fully support the Ryder Cup's decision to delay a year in order to ensure fans could be a part of the incredible atmosphere in Wisconsin.

"And the delay of next year's Presidents Cup was the right decision in order to allow for that option." 

US Team captain Steve Stricker said postponing the Ryder Cup was "the right thing to do under the circumstances".

He added: "At the end of the day, we want to stage a Ryder Cup that will rival all other Ryder Cups in my home state of Wisconsin, and now we have the opportunity to showcase the event as it was meant to be seen."  

European counterpart Padraig Harrington said: "Rescheduling the Ryder Cup was never going to be an easy decision given the many factors to take into consideration.

"But I believe it is the right assessment given the unprecedented circumstances we are facing at this time. 

"When you think of the Ryder Cup you think of the distinctive atmosphere generated by the spectators, such as around the first tee at Le Golf National two years ago.

"If that cannot be responsibly recreated at Whistling Straits in September, then it is correct that we all wait until it can be. 

"I know, right now, that September 2021 feels like a long time away. But it will come around quickly and I guarantee that the European players and I will be ready when it does."

There have been more than 32,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Wisconsin, according to the state's Department of Health Services. 

In total, there have been nearly 3.1million positive tests in the United States, with more than 134,000 deaths among those known to have contracted the virus.

The Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits has been rescheduled to take place in 2021, organisers have confirmed, with the Presidents Cup moving to 2022.

An unidentified Orlando Magic player tested positive for coronavirus, while guard Markelle Fultz did not travel with the team for the NBA's season restart due to a personal issue. 

The 2019-20 NBA season is set to resume via a 22-team format at the Disney World complex in Orlando, Florida on July 30 after the campaign was halted due to the COVID-19 crisis in March.

Magic general manger Jeff Weltman said an unnamed player that contracted coronavirus during the NBA's final round of mandatory testing on June 23 is going through the league's quarantine protocols.  

"That player, I'm not at liberty to speak about it, is following protocol and we're hoping he can join us shortly," Weltman said on a videoconference call on Tuesday.

Fultz, meanwhile, was excused from the Magic and is expected to join the team when he can while adhering to the NBA's re-entry rules.   

Former number one pick Fultz ranked fifth on the Magic with an average of 12.1 points and first with 5.2 assists per game when the NBA season was suspended on March 12.  

No team have a shorter distance to travel than the Magic for the season restart at the Walt Disney complex in Orlando, where the franchise will recommence their campaign against the Brooklyn Nets on July 31.

"I think guys are excited," Weltman said. "They are optimistic. As the details become more apparent to everyone, I think the comfort level with the ability to maintain the health and safety of everyone involved has risen to a very high level.

"Today [Tuesday] everyone was in good spirits and they are looking forward to getting back to work."

The Magic are eighth in the Eastern Conference, half a game behind the Nets and five and a half games ahead of the ninth-placed Washington Wizards. 

Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid said he can carry the championship hopefuls as the league prepares to return following the coronavirus-enforced break.

The 2019-20 NBA season is set to restart via a 22-team format at the Disney World complex in Orlando, Florida on July 30 after the campaign was halted due to COVID-19 in March.

All eyes will be on three-time All-Star center Embiid when the NBA returns following the coronavirus pandemic.

Philadelphia will recommence against Eastern Conference rivals the Indiana Pacers, who share identical 39-26 records to be fifth and sixth respectively, on August 1.

Embiid, who had been averaging 23.4 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game this season, insisted the 76ers' offense should go through him.

"I know what I'm capable of, and I know what my team-mates think of me," Embiid said in a conference call with reporters on Tuesday.

"I know I'm capable of carrying the team, so it's all about me being assertive. If I feel like I'm not getting the ball, I just got to talk to them and do what I have to do.

"But at the end of the day, I should never be in a position to complain about getting the ball, just because of who I am.

"I believe I can carry the team, and I believe being able to do that, I just got to take matters into my own hands. And obviously, I need to be in positions where I feel comfortable, and I believe my team-mates are going to help."

The 76ers – 14 games behind the Eastern Conference and NBA-leading Milwaukee Bucks (53-12) – are also set to be boosted by the return of fellow All-Star Ben Simmons.

Simmons has been sidelined since February due to a back injury, while there continues to be doubts over whether the Australian and Embiid can coexist in Philadelphia due to their contrasting styles.

"We're going to need him," Embiid said. "It's a team game. I'm going to do my best to keep helping him and create some space for him, and we all got to do the same thing just to help each other.

"At the end of the day, it's all about winning a championship, and I feel like he has the right mindset, that's what he wants to do. I know one thing about him, he wants to win, and he's going to do what it takes to win. So whatever we're going to need him to do, that's what he has to do."

Boston Red Sox pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez tested positive for coronavirus, manager Ron Roenicke confirmed on Tuesday. 

Rodriguez has not been with the Red Sox at Fenway Park since camp opened due to his relatives being ill.

Roenicke said Rodriguez is not 100 percent but is feeling better amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which has halted the start of the MLB season since March.

Roenicke also said that he intended to have Rodriguez – who won a career-high 19 games last season with a 3.81 ERA – start on opening day against the Baltimore Orioles on July 24.

Number one starter Chris Sale will miss the 2020 season following Tommy John surgery.  

"Just unfortunate that we might not be able to do it," Roenicke said. "We'll have to wait and see."

Infield prospect Bobby Dalbec also tested positive for coronavirus, but he is asymptomatic. Rodriguez and Dalbec are the third and fourth members of the team who have tested positive for the virus. 

A shortened 60-game 2020 regular season is set to get underway on July 23.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver is concerned positive coronavirus tests may penetrate the Orlando bubble ahead of the league's planned return.

The 2019-20 NBA season is set to restart via a 22-team format at the Disney World complex in Orlando, Florida on July 30 after the campaign was halted due to COVID-19 in March.

However, there are concerns after Brooklyn Nets star Spencer Dinwiddie returned a second positive test for coronavirus – ruling him out of the season.

While Silver expects COVID-19 cases, he told Fortune Brainstorm Health: "We won't be surprised when they first come down to Orlando if we have some additional players test positive.

"What would be most concerning is once players enter this campus and then go through our quarantine period, then if they were to test positive or if we were to have any positive tests, we would know we would have an issue."

"We would know that there's, in essence, a hole in our bubble or that our quarantine or our campus is not working in some way," Silver added. "So that would be very concerning."

"We began testing all our teams roughly two weeks ago and as we reported we had a significant number of positive cases," he said. "I think that is more a representation of what is happening around the country."

"So on paper, and dealing with our experts, this should work. But we shall see. I'm confident based on the positive cases we are seeing from our players and the general public around the country that it will be safer on this campus than off this campus in part because we are going to be doing daily testing.

"But again, this virus has humbled many, so I am not going to express any higher level of confidence than we are following the protocols, and we hope it works as we designed it."

Silver continued: "I think we do have the ability to trace, of course to try to understand where that positive case came from.

"We can actually analyse the virus itself and try to track whether there is more than one case, if it's, in essence, the same virus and same genetic variation of the virus that is passed from one player to another or two people have gotten it on the campus independently. So those are all things that we are looking at.

"Certainly if we had any sort of significant spread within our campus, we would be shut down again."

The Milwaukee Bucks led the NBA with a 53-12 record prior to the league's postponement.

July 30 will see the New Orleans Pelicans-Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Lakers-Los Angeles Clippers headline the NBA's comeback.

Brooklyn Nets point guard Spencer Dinwiddie will not play when the NBA season resumes in Orlando after a second positive test for coronavirus. 

The 27-year-old had been enjoying a breakout season, averaging career bests of 20.6 points, 6.8 assists and 3.5 rebounds while playing in all 64 games before the campaign was halted due to the global pandemic. 

"After another positive test yesterday and considering the symptoms, BrooklynNets, team doctors and I have decided that it would be in the best interest for me and the team that I do not play in Orlando,” Dinwiddie tweeted Tuesday.

"I will be supporting the guys every step of the way!"

With Kevin Durant missing the entire 2019-20 season due to a torn Achilles tendon and injuries limiting Kyrie Irving to just 20 games, Dinwiddie had been carrying the Nets, leading the team in scoring in 35 games and in assists in 43. 

The Nets (30-34) owned a half-game lead over the eighth-place Orlando Magic when the season was paused in mid-March.

However, they will now be without Dinwiddie, Durant, Irving, DeAndre Jordan and Wilson Chandler when the season restarts at ESPN's Wide World of Sports Complex outside of Orlando. 

Dwight Howard has confirmed he will play for the Los Angeles Lakers when the NBA season resumes later this month.

The 2019-20 campaign will recommence on July 30 with a 22-team tournament in Orlando, Florida following the coronavirus-enforced break.

Last month, Lakers center Howard said the return of basketball would "only be a distraction" from the fight against social and racial injustice in the wake of protests across the world following the death of George Floyd in May.

Howard's agent admitted he was unsure if the eight-time All-Star would take part in the Orlando tournament, yet the Lakers center now intends to finish the campaign and donate the remainder of his salary to the 'Breathe Again' campaign.

"Yes, I will be joining my team in Orlando," Howard told CNN.

"I have a contractual obligation to my team-mates, to my fans, the Lakers, the organisation and everyone, but at the same time, I also have an obligation to my family and to my community.

"We will be getting a lot of work done here in Atlanta and around the nation as far as making sure people don't forget about us and what's going on in our communities."

On the importance of donating his salary, Howard added: "During my time in the bubble, I will use that time to talk about Breathe Again, and I'm going to use my salary - all the money, the paychecks that I'll be getting from going down in the bubble - to help push this Breathe Again [initiative], push our movement and just make sure that people don't forget about what's going on in our society."

The 49-14 Lakers have already confirmed their spot in the NBA post-season and have the best record in the Western Conference.

Howard, the first overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft, is yet to win a championship ring.

The Washington Nationals will begin a delayed defence of their World Series title by hosting the New York Yankees on July 23 as MLB announced the schedule for its abbreviated 60-game 2020 season on Monday. 

The start of the MLB campaign has been on hold since March due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has wreaked havoc in the United States and across the globe.

But the marquee Nationals-Yankees matchup will be the first game of an opening-night doubleheader, with the Los Angeles Dodgers hosting rivals the San Francisco Giants in the nightcap.

That game is expected to mark the Dodgers debut of 2018 American League MVP Mookie Betts, while Gerrit Cole could make his first start since signing a nine-year, $324million contract with the Yankees in December. 

All other teams will begin their seasons on July 24, highlighted by the Texas Rangers hosting the Colorado Rockies in the first game at their new stadium – Globe Life Field.  

Games will be held without spectators during the shortened regular season, which is slated to end on September 27 and will be followed by a 10-team playoff format. 

Other notable opening series include the Los Angeles Angels, who made an offseason splash by signing former Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon, visiting the Oakland Athletics and defending National League East champions the Atlanta Braves traveling to New York to take on division rivals the Mets. 

The schedule also includes a matchup between the St Louis Cardinals and Chicago White Sox in Dyersville, Iowa on August 13, which will be played on the field used in the acclaimed baseball film "Field of Dreams." 

MLB also rescheduled Jackie Robinson Day for August 28. The annual celebration of the Hall of Fame player who broke baseball's colour barrier in 1947 is traditionally held on April 15, but was postponed due to COVID-19.

Additionally, MLB will honour the 100th anniversary of the Negro Leagues on August 16 and will hold Roberto Clemente Day to commemorate the former Pittsburgh Pirates great on September 9. 

The revised schedule will have teams playing 40 games against division opponents and 20 interleague games against a corresponding geographical division, such as the AL East facing teams from the NL East. 

FC Dallas have been withdrawn from the MLS is Back Tournament in Orlando after 10 players and one coach tested positive for coronavirus.

The MLS, which has been suspended since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is set to resume on Wednesday at the Disney World Resort in Florida.

However, Dallas – who had been originally scheduled to open their tournament against Vancouver Whitecaps on Thursday – will not be involved following Monday's announcement.

Each of the positive tests either occurred upon the club's arrival or within a few days of arriving in Orlando.

The MLS said, "the decision was made in the best interest of the health of all players and staff participating in the tournament, and in line with protocols created in conjunction with local and national health authorities and infectious disease experts."

"Given the impact of the number of positive tests on the club's ability to train and play competitive matches, we have made the decision to withdraw FC Dallas from the MLS is Back Tournament," said MLS Commissioner Don Garber in a league statement.

"The health of everyone involved in our return to play has always been our top priority, and we will continue to make decisions consistent with that priority."

Dallas head coach Luchi Gonzalez added: "As we continue to focus on the well-being of our players, coaches and staff who are in isolation, we understand it is not in their best interests to compete at this time.

"While we're disappointed, the health and safety of our traveling delegation as well as our league partners is our highest priority."

"We absolutely agree with the league's decision to withdraw FC Dallas from the MLS is Back Tournament out of safety concerns for our players and staff," said Dallas president Dan Hunt. "We're looking forward to resuming the 2020 season once the entire club is healthy and in a position to play competitive matches at the highest level."

 

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