Bubba Watson has become the latest player to withdraw from The 149th Open at Royal St George’s after being identified as a close contact of an individual testing positive for Covid-19.
“While I am vaccinated and have passed the required pre-travel COVID test, not enough time has passed for me to comfortably join the charter flight and risk exposure to the other players and personnel on board,” Watson said in a statement.
“Like many of you, I look forward to watching The Open Championship on TV. Since I will be watching from the comfort of my couch, I would not mind seeing the field have to deal with a little rain and strong winds.”
“For those wondering, the U.K. and U.S. COVID-19 guidelines are quite different. Getting on the charter or a commercial flight was not an option available to me after my recent exposure. I don’t make the rules but do have to follow them.”
Watson is replaced by American Brendan Steele. He joins the likes of Hideki Matsuyama, Matthew Wolff, Danny Lee and K.H. Lee in also missing out.
The next three players on the reserve list are:
- John Catlin (USA) OWGR 89
- Adam Long (USA) OWGR 90
- Sam Horsfield (ENG) OWGR 92