Jon Rahm thought his forced withdrawal at the Memorial earlier this year was going to be the low point of his PGA Tour season. The Spaniard held a commanding six-stroke lead after the third round of the tournament, but a positive COVID-19 test cost him a chance at another trophy.
Rahm later said he felt “invincible” after receiving the vaccine, and he thought his COVID-19 nightmare was finally over. But the vaccinated golfer just tested positive for the virus again, forcing him to withdraw from the Tokyo Olympics.
Jon Rahm felt “invincible” after receiving COVID-19 vaccine
Rahm was well on his way to winning his first tournament of the year and his sixth on Tour at the Memorial last month. After shooting 69, 65, and 64 in the first three rounds of the event, he held a six-stroke lead over the rest of the field at 18-under par heading into the final round.
But as he walked off the 18th green after his brilliant third round, Rahm was informed that he tested positive for COVID-19. He was forced to withdraw the same day.
Interestingly, Rahm had actually received the COVID-19 vaccine prior to the tournament, but he was still within the 14-day window to not be considered fully vaccinated. The World No. 1 recovered in time for the U.S. Open a few weeks later, and he said he was thrilled to finally put the virus behind him.
“I got it all. I had it, I got the antibodies, got the vaccination. I feel invincible at this point,” Rahm said at his U.S. Open press conference last month.
But Rahm clearly wasn’t as invincible as he thought.
Rahm withdraws from the Olympics after yet another positive COVID-19 test
Rahm rebounded from his shocking withdrawal in epic fashion by winning the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines in his next start. He figured it was a sign of positive things to come after one of the most disappointing finishes to a tournament in his career, but he just received an even more devastating blow.
On Saturday, less than a week away from the start of the golf tournament at the 2020 Olympics, the Spanish Olympic committee announced that Rahm has withdrawn from the event due to another positive COVID-19 test.
For a guy who did everything in his power to avoid another COVID-19 setback, it’s a crushing blow. No matter how unfair it may seem, Rahm won’t be competing in Tokyo this year.
Rahm not the only COVID-19 casualty at the Olympics
Rahm is the biggest star to drop out of the Olympics due to COVID-19, but he’s not the only one. Over the weekend, Bryson DeChambeau also tested positive for the virus and was forced to withdraw himself. Patrick Reed will replace the big-hitting righty on Team USA.
The vaccine has finally brought sports back to how we remember them, but it doesn’t make any athlete invincible.