Jon Rahm was in close proximity to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and had to adhere to contact-tracing protocols

By Naledi Ushe
June 07, 2021 04:35 PM
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Jon Rahm
Jon Rahm
| Credit: David Cannon/Getty

Jon Rahm's chance at winning his sixth PGA Tour was cut short.

The golfer, 26, was forced to withdraw from the Memorial Tournament over the weekend after he tested positive for COVID-19 while in the lead by six strokes following a third-round 64.

Rahm was in proximity to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and then had to adhere to contact-tracing protocols, which meant starting on May 31 he was subject to "daily testing and restricted access to indoor facilities," the PGA Tour said in a statement. Up until Saturday, he had tested negative.

The golfer, who has five PGA Tour wins under his belt, took a test on Saturday after the second round which came back positive. Medical advisors "requested a confirmatory test on the original sample," which was also positive, the PGA Tour said. Rahm was asymptomatic.

Jon Rahm
Jon Rahm
| Credit: Andrew Redington/Getty

Rahm was already playing his third-round so officials informed him after that he had to be withdrawn from the competition. The golfer "is now in isolation, and in accordance with CDC guidelines, he will need to remain in isolation through Tuesday, June 15," the PGA Tour announced.

Following his withdrawal, Rahm released a statement telling fans he was "very disappointed."

"I'm very disappointed in having to withdraw from the Memorial Tournament. This is one of those things that happens in life, one of those moments where how we respond to a setback defines us as people," he wrote

Rahm continued, "I'm very thankful that my family and I are all OK. I will take all of the necessary precautions to be safe and healthy, and I look forward to returning to the golf course as soon as possible."

"Thank you to all of the fans for their support and I'm looking forward to watching the showdown tomorrow afternoon with you all," the athlete added.

It's unclear if Rahm was vaccinated.

Patrick Cantlay, Scottie Scheffler and Collin Morikawa were grouped with Rahm in the third round.

"It's the worst situation that something like this could happen in and unfortunately I guess we knew that this was a potential lurking out there even when we came back to golf. It's just extremely unfortunate," Cantlay, 29, said, according to the Golf Channel following the announcement.

Scheffler, 24, added, "It's terrible that that happened. I think it's terrible they told him in front of the cameras."

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Andy Levinson, senior vice president of tournament administration for the Tour, told the Golf Channel that the three players were being "interviewed" by Tour officials to determine if they needed to be subject to contact-tracing protocols.

Cantlay and Morikawa, 24, tied with 13 under at 72, but Cantlay came out as the winner of the PGA Tour after a playoff.

Patrick Cantlay
Patrick Cantlay
| Credit: Matthew Stockman/Getty

Cantlay discussed his win and how it could have been affected had Rahm been able to play.

"Such a weird situation and so unfortunate,'' he said, according to ESPN. "Because, me included, everyone knows it would have been a totally different day had that not happened. But there's nothing I could do about it. I just tried as hard as I could to reset and get focused.''

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