It’s a perfect 4-for-4 for the return of Olympic golf … just not the 4-for-4 that Rio wanted.
World No. 3 Jordan Spieth announced on Tuesday that like No. 1 Jason Day, No. 2 Dustin Johnson, and No. 4 Rory McIlroy, he’ll be skipping the Summer Olympics next month in Rio.
Spieth did not specifically cite the Zika virus that is plaguing South and Central America, merely stating that “health reasons” play a factor. Spieth may be just exhausted from the whirlwind that has been his life the last three years, as he is also not playing the PGA Tournament – the John Deere Classic – that same week.
Spieth gave the news to reporters at this Open Championship press conference at the Royal Troon in Chicago. Although the third Major of the year, one he nearly won a year ago, starts in two days, 13 of the 22 questions Spieth answered centered around the Olympics.
“I can understand why people are skeptical,” he said. “They’re as passionate about the Olympics, as I am. They also are not in my shoes. So I feel that many, if not all of you, would have made the same decision I made if you were in my shoes. Whether you believe it or not, so be it. This is just something that was very, very challenging for me. I very much struggled with it. I certainly didn’t want to have to do this during major week. Obviously, would have rather had the focus be on the Open Championship, but it hasn’t been the beginning of this week. Hopefully it will after I leave this room.”