Adam Scott Says He Won't Return to PGA Tour Until July Despite Planned Restart

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2020

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FLORIDA - MARCH 11: Adam Scott of Australia looks on during a practice round prior to The PLAYERS Championship on The Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass  on March 11, 2020 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. (Photo by Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images)
Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images

Australian golfer Adam Scott said Wednesday he's not planning a return to the United States to compete on the PGA Tour until the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational on July 30 amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Scott told Evin Priest of the Australian Associated Press he's concerned about potential transmission of COVID-19 during an event, which would lead to an extended quarantine in the U.S. without the ability to compete in tournaments:

"They are being fairly thorough, but my initial reaction was I was surprised it wasn't tighter than it is. What concerns me is dialogue that (the Tour) is hopeful of returning one or two-hour test (results). You'd want that in place before competing.

"The other (concern) is it seems an asymptomatic person could operate within a tournament. If they're not showing symptoms and I somehow picked it up inside the course and I'm disqualified I'm now self-isolating (in that city) for two weeks. I'd be annoyed if that happened."

The 2019-20 PGA Tour schedule, which has been halted since March 12, is set to resume June 11 with the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas.

Scott, 39, was competing in the Players Championship before the tournament was canceled after the opening round because of the rapidly developing coronavirus situation. He posted a two-under 70 in the first round before flying home to Australia.

The 2013 Masters champion told Priest he was "pretty primed" to contend for another Green Jacket at Augusta this year before the schedule was dramatically altered. This year's Masters Tournament is now slated to take place beginning Nov. 12.

Scott, who won the Genesis Invitational in February, said his focus is now figuring out the best way to handle the Tour's condensed schedule, which could include an extended stay in the U.S.

After arriving for the St. Jude Invitational, he'd likely stay through the U.S. Open, which kicks off Sept. 17.

"It's going to turn into like a nine-week trip to do that, maybe more," he told Priest.

He could then return to Australia for around a month before returning for the Masters in November.

England's Lee Westwood is another high-profile player who's opted to skip the PGA Tour's initial comeback events while waiting for the situation to evolve. He discussed the decision Tuesday with Todd Lewis of Golf Channel.

"Right now I won't be playing them, not with having to leave here two weeks before, quarantine, then play the two tournaments, then come back here and quarantine again," he said. "It's six weeks for two tournaments, and to me that's just not worth it. And it's not worth taking the risk if everybody thinks that those kind of precautions have got to be in place. I don't feel like golf's a priority if it's that severe."

In addition, fans won't be allowed in attendance when the Tour resumes next month.