Ladies Scottish Open losing its prized slot in 2019

Next year's Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open will not be held in the same week as the past two years or this year.

South Korea's I-K Kim used last year's Ladies Scottish Open at Dundonald Links to help her win the Ricoh Women's British Open at Kingbarns the following week

The Evian Championship in France, which became the fifth women’s major in 2013, is taking over the slot in the last full week in July in 2019.

That means a serious doubt has been cast over the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open continuing to precede the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

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Venues and dates for those two events have yet to be confirmed and all that is being said at the moment by the LPGA is that they will form a “Europe Swing” with the Evian Championship.

The Ricoh Women’s British Open is traditionally held in the first week in August and, if it is staying there next year, that means back-to-back women’s majors.

But where would that leave the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open?

Moving it a week earlier would see it being held the same week as the Open Championship at Royal Portrush.

And it would surely lose some of the appeal it has just started to build up if it moved to the week after the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

Intrigue about next year’s summer schedule had already been provided by Rory McIlroy when he recently suggested that the men’s Irish and Scottish Opens should swap slots in 2019 to fit in with the Open Championship at Royal Portrush.

“It would be great if the Scottish Open could just switch dates with us for this one year,” said McIlroy during the Honda Classic.

“We have asked (European Tour chief executive) Keith Pelley and Keith advised me he’s asked (Aberdeen Standard Investments co-CEO) Martin Gilbert if he would agree to swap dates with the Irish just for this one year next year.”

The four-time major winner added: “It might mean I would agree to play the Scottish Open for a few years but I don’t know.

“Hopefully, they will agree as it would be just for one year as it would just make it so easy for those contesting The Open. But then everyone has their own individual agenda, so we’ll see.”

Meanwhile, the prize fund for the 2019 Evian Championship has been raised to $4.1 million - strengthening its position as the second-largest purse on LPGA Tour.