IT HAS been eight, long weeks since Grant Forrest last stepped out onto a golf course.

The North Berwick ace was enjoying an impressive second year on the European Tour but his momentum has been halted by the coronavirus and its worldwide impact.

A number of competitions across the globe have been cancelled or postponed, leaving golfers stuck at home.

Forrest told Courier Sport it was the longest he had gone without playing the sport, with his golfing limited to a net in his back garden.

He said: “I’m missing it now and just want to get back on the course.

“It is nice to get a break sometimes but not being able to play at all is becoming a bit of a drag just now.”

Forrest’s last competition came at Education City Golf Club in Doha, with the final round played on March 8.

Tournaments in Kenya, India, USA, Malaysia, China and Spain have all been cancelled since Forrest’s 126th place finish.

There is no indication as to when the season could once again get under way, with competitions postponed or cancelled until the end of July at the earliest.

Even then, it remains to be seen what restrictions are in place in terms of crowds and social gatherings.

He said: “I was going to be off until the Andalucia Masters at Valderrama, which finished at the weekend.

“We have missed a few events but it was getting busy for us right around the end of April really all the way through until the end of the summer.

“Everything is being cancelled or postponed right up until the British Masters, which is at the end of July.

“It is a long time and my last event was the first week in March.

“You are looking at the best part of five months that we are going to be without a tournament.

“It is a long time to not compete and it will be quite different going back and tournaments will have a different feel – probably without crowds and everything else.”

Among the tournaments that has been impacted by the global pandemic is the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open. It was due to return to The Renaissance Club, by Dirleton, this July but has been postponed.

Last year’s tournament saw upwards of 140 professionals taking part in the competition, which was won by Bernd Wiesberger after a play-off with Benjamin Hebert.

Forrest finished tied for 43rd on -12 and had again been looking forward to taking on the course, which is just a few miles from his home.

The 26-year-old said: “I think it was sort of inevitable that it was going to get postponed.

“We were waiting for it but being a Rolex Series event and being in the UK, it will be prioritised to be rescheduled and hopefully it does get played this year.

“It is great for Scottish golf and East Lothian as an area as well.

“One thing I don’t really miss in all of this is going through an airport.

“That is one of the nice things about not competing and with the Scottish Open being so local it is great to sleep in your own bed and not have to travel to get to the tournament.”

The cancellations and postponements come at a time when Forrest was enjoying an impressive second year on the European Tour.

Top 30 finishes in Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Oman had caught the eye while a fourth place finish in Mauritius saw him finish just one shot behind winner Rasmus Højgaard.

Forrest added: “I had learned a lot in my first year last year and had a good start to this season.

“It is a bit of a shame it has been curtailed and come to this really.

“We just don’t know when we are going to be back playing and when we do return to what extent.”