Golfing legend Jack Nicklaus is sharing his thoughts on the chaos that erupted at Muirfield Village Golf Club on Saturday afternoon after PGA superstar Jon Rahm, who was leading the Memorial Tournament by 6 strokes going into the final round, was told he tested positive for COVID-19 and was forced to withdraw from the tourney.
The unbelievable scene went down Saturday in Dublin, Ohio shortly after Rahm finished up with an impressive round of 64 and walked off the 18th green.
Surreal TV moment as six-stroke leader Jon Rahm learns he tested positive for COVID and Jim Nantz tries to make sense of it without knowing what Rahm's been told pic.twitter.com/WvD6LmAlxs
— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) June 5, 2021
CBS commentators Jim Nantz and Sir Nick Faldo were speechless as they held the broadcast following the end of play on Saturday afternoon as they searched for answers as to what caused Jon Rahm such distress following his conversation with an official after his round.
Faldo was especially perplexed as to why the PGA officials chose to reveal the heartbreaking news to Rahm in front of all the spectators and cameras, rather than wait until he went into the tent to sign his scorecard.
After minutes of mystery, it was revealed that Jon Rahm had tested positive for COVID-19 and was going to immediately be withdrawn from the Memorial Tournament. As a returning champion of the annual Nicklaus-centric tournament, it was an especially big blow for Rahm as he was playing fantastic golf and had all but sealed a victory for Sunday.
Hours after the dust settled, Jack Nicklaus took to Instagram with a message about the situation and seemed to imply that Rahm knew he was in a dicey situation earlier in the week.
“I feel very bad for Jon Rahm. He’s played absolutely brilliant golf this week,” Jack Nickalus wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of Rahm.
He continued, “Jon knew as early as Monday that he had come in close contact with an individual who tested COVID positive, and he followed all PGA TOUR protocols as it relates to contact tracing. He tested negative throughout the week, but unfortunately tested positive today. There was no choice for the TOUR or Jon.”
Nicklaus added a message of support to Rahm and commented about the ongoing situation the world continues to face with the coronavirus:
“On behalf of the Memorial Tournament, our hearts go out to Jon and his family, as well as all the patrons who witnessed a spectacular round by Jon—only to be negated by this horrible pandemic our world continues to endure. I wish Jon a speedy recovery and hope he gets back to competition soon. —Jack.”