If there is an award in 2021 for golf’s luckiest and also unluckiest golfer it would have to be Jon Rahm.
Firstly, the ‘unlucky’ news with Rahm testing positive for a second time in two months for Covid-19.
Rahm had been shockingly informed in front of everyone post the third round of the Memorial that news of a positive test meant he had to withdraw from the Jack Nicklaus hosted event immediately.
Then this week we learned Rahm tested positive for a second time ahead of the honour of representing Spain in the Olympics.
“I would have loved to have been the first Spanish Olympic gold medalist in golf, but unfortunately destiny had other plans,” he wrote on his Twitter account.
“This is a great reminder for all of us that we’re still in a pandemic.”
And staying on the Covid-19 theme, Rahm’s had the sadness of losing his great-grandmother and an aunt to his mother during the worldwide pandemic. Rahm had spoken highly during Memorial week of his great-grandmother, who he says helped raise him alongside his parents, and how her ashes were laid to rest at a family resting place in Madrid.
On a brighter note the 26-year-old celebrated becoming a father in April when his wife Kelley gave birth to a son named, Kepa. There was talk that the baby may arrive during the week of the Masters, with Rahm travelling to Augusta as proud as punch, as any new father would, in finishing tied for fifth.
Then securing a share of eighth at the PGA Championship, Rahm headed to the defence of his Memorial title where a third round 64 handed him a six-shot lead but after rolling in his final putt on day three we got the sight of Rahm bent over burying his face in his hands.
After satisfying the 10-day quarantine, Rahm headed to Torrey Pines where he had brilliantly captured a maiden PGA Tour title by rolling-in a 72nd hole eagle winning putt to win the 2017 Farmers Insurance Open.
Torrey Pines had another personal memory for Rahm as it was one one of the nearby walkways he proposed to Kelley and he emerged from the U.S. Open last round contenders to birdie his closing two holes and become the first Spanish winner of a U.S. Open
Rahm dedicated his victory to Spanish maestro and boyhood hero, Seve Ballesteros saying at the time; “This was definitely for Seve. I know he tried a lot and usually we think a lot about him in the Masters but I know he wanted to win this one most of all.”
The new U.S. Open winner also dedicated the win to Bilbao journalist, Jose Manual Cortizas.
“Jose Manuel covered basketball in the city I’m from, in Bilbao, and the owner of the newspaper said, ‘Hey, start following this golfer who’s doing pretty good things.’ Without ever hesitating, he jumped on a plane and started following me around the world.”
Also, in winning the U.S. Open Rahm enjoyed the delight of becoming world No.1 only for him to lose golf’s top-billing with a seventh placed finish at the Scottish Open.
Rahm went back to World No. 1 in sharing third place at the Open Championship and despite now missing out on the chance of a golfing gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics, Rahm will not lose his top ranking.
You have to think that there is much more for Rahm to savour in the handful of months remaining in 2021 and top of the list would be a second straight European Team victory cap at September’s rescheduled Ryder Cup.
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