Jon Rahm on golfers skipping Olympics: ‘I don’t blame them. They’re not making it easy’

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Spain’s Jon Rahm plans to represent his country in the Olympics, but he understands why players such as Dustin Johnson and Adam Scott have announced they intend to skip the competition in Saitama, Japan, from July 29-Aug 1.

“The Olympic committee are not making it very easy for us to choose it, simply because up until not too long ago we couldn’t go to our site or tournament hotel until Wednesday and we had to stay in the Olympic Village until then,” he said. “As I understand from what I been told there is at least one- to two-hour drive to the golf course. That’s a lot of time to be in the car going to and coming back from the Olympic Village, and then you can only go to the hotel on Wednesday. Your family is not allowed. You’re not allowed to go to any other events. There are just so many restrictions.”

The Olympics were postponed last year due to the global pandemic. There have been continuing concerns whether conditions have improved enough for the Olympics to be played later this year. To avoid a COVID outbreak in the Olympic Village, strict policies have been announced.

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Rahm, 26, said he also understood why a player such as Danny Lee would decline his spot in the field to concentrate on retaining his PGA Tour card.

“I can understand why a lot of people are prioritizing the FedEx Cup events and great golf events,” said Rahm, noting that the golf in Japan falls in between the British Open and the WGC. “The Olympics are relatively new for the golf, and I don’t blame them,” he said. “In my case I want to play. It’s an absolute dream of mine to be an Olympian.”

He added: “I’ve been able to win championships representing Spain as an amateur in almost every imaginable level, and to bring back the gold medal would be something amazing.”

Rahm, who is the No. 3-ranked golfer in the world, is a lock to make the Spanish team. He said that despite the inconveniences he wouldn’t miss it for the world.

“Yeah, I want to play,” he said. “They’re not making it very easy, but I do want to play.”

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