De Jonge withdraws from Olympic golf tournament
Zimbabwe’s Brendon de Jonge has become the latest player to withdraw his name from consideration for this year’s Olympics, but admits it is “truly a business decision.”
While the likes of world No 1 Jason Day and four-time major winner Rory McIlroy have cited concerns about the Zika virus for opting out of competing in Rio, De Jonge is more concerned about securing his PGA Tour card for next season.
“The reason for my decision is not my concern about the Zika virus. It is truly a business decision,” De Jonge said in a statement to GolfChannel.com. “It would have been a great honour to play for my country.”
De Jonge is currently 160th on the FedEx Cup points list and needs to finish in the top 125 at the end of the season to keep full playing rights. Competing in Rio would mean missing two PGA Tour events.
“I am truly disappointed, but my current position on the FedEx Cup points list does not allow me the luxury to skip the John Deere Classic or the Travelers Championship,’ the 35-year-old added. “I must finish in the top 125 to gain entry into our FedEx Cup playoffs. This has to be a priority for me and my family.”
De Jonge’s withdrawal means that Zimbabwe will not be represented in Rio, but Spain’s Sergio Garcia has confirmed that he will take up his place as golf returns to the Games for the first time since 1904.
Garcia wrote on Twitter: “I know there r some dangers but representing Spain, trying to make golf grow & becoming an Olympian r too important so I’ll be at @Olympics.”
Brendon de Jonge