In a single moment, a dream tournament turned into a nightmare for Jon Rahm.
The world No. 3 golfer was forced to withdraw from the Memorial Tournament on Saturday after testing positive for COVID-19. He was informed of the positive test on air immediately after the third round, in which he had built up a commanding six-stroke lead.
The golfer was in tears after getting the news on live television:
The PGA Tour officially announced the decision minutes later, saying that Rahm had tested negative every day of the tournament after coming into close contact with a person who had tested positive for COVID-19. His test taken on Friday after the second round, however, returned positive while Rahm was on the course.
A second test of the original sample also turned up positive, leading to Rahm’s withdrawal from the tournament. The Tour called it “an incredibly unfortunate situation.”
At the time of his withdrawal, Rahm was 18-under for the tournament and six strokes ahead of Collin Morikawa and Patrick Cantlay for the lead. Morikawa and Cantlay are now the co-leaders at 12-under.
Rahm had dominated the tournament all week, highlighted by a hole-in-one during the second round and a tournament-record 64 on Saturday. He was well-positioned to break the tournament’s 72-hole record of 20-under, but will now enter isolation.
With the withdrawal, Rahm loses his grip on the tournament’s $1.67 million prize for the winner.
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