Jon Rahm hits takes six-shot Memorial lead… before positive Covid test forces his withdrawal
Jon Rahm tested positive for Covid-19 and was forced to withdraw from the Memorial Tournament while holding a six-stroke lead after Saturday’s third round.
Rahm, who is the third-ranked golfer in the world, shot an eight-under-par 64 on Saturday and was at a tournament-record 18 under after three rounds.
“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,” Rahm said in a statement posted to Twitter on Saturday night. “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.”
Collin Morikawa and Patrick Cantlay are now the co-leaders at 12 under.
The PGA released the following statement Saturday afternoon:
“On the evening Monday, May 31, the PGA Tour notified Jon Rahm that he was subject to contact-tracing protocols, as he had come in close contact with a person who was Covid positive. Per the Tour’s Covid Health & Safety Plan, Rahm was given the option to remain in the competition and enter our tracing protocol, which includes daily testing and restricted access to indoor facilities. Rahm has remained asymptomatic.
“Rahm has tested negative every day, but his most recent test – which was performed after the conclusion of his second round (rain delayed) and before the start of his third round – returned positive at approximately 4:20 p.m. ET while Rahm was on the golf course. The PGA TOUR’s medical advisor requested a confirmatory test on the original sample, which came back at 6:05 p.m. ET, and was also positive.”
Rahm was notified immediately after the round. He is asymptomatic and will be in isolation through June 15, two days before the start of the U.S. Open.
The Tour also said there have been only four positive tests (including Rahm) within competition over the past 50 tournaments, though Rahm is the first positive, asymptomatic case.