World No. 1 Golfer Jon Rahm Withdraws from Olympics After Testing Positive for COVID

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVJuly 25, 2021

SANDWICH, ENGLAND - JULY 18: Jon Rahm of Spain takes a look at The Golf Champion Trophy, also known as the Claret Jug on the first tee during Day Four of The 149th Open at Royal St George’s Golf Club on July 18, 2021 in Sandwich, England. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Andrew Redington/Getty Images

Spain's Jon Rahm was forced to withdraw from the Summer Olympics after testing positive for COVID-19, the International Golf Federation announced Sunday. 

Jon Rahm Rodriguez @JonRahmpga

🇪🇸 Olympics <a href="https://t.co/ZsXg3GDEsh">pic.twitter.com/ZsXg3GDEsh</a>

Rahm, the world's No. 1-ranked golfer and presumptive favorite in Tokyo, has tested positive twice in the past two months. He told reporters in June that he was vaccinated but not out of the two-week window for the vaccination to take effect when he was forced to withdraw ahead of the fourth round of the Memorial Tournament.

"Well, truth is I was vaccinated," Rahm said. "I just wasn't out of that 14-day period. I had started the process, and unfortunately, that's how timing ended up being. Yeah, I was vaccinated. It's just I was still within those 14 days when I started COVID-tracing protocol, and I had to stay in it."

American Bryson DeChambeau was also forced to withdraw from the event because of a positive COVID-19 test. 

Rahm contracting the virus twice in as many months is medically highly unlikely–especially for a vaccinated person. However, there have been an increasing number of people have seen reinfection as doctors learn more about how long immunity lasts, both from natural infection and vaccination.

The IOC has to take every positive test as if the person has the virus to ensure the safety of fellow players and those who are working the Games.

Rahm has not commented on his withdrawal.