Former World No. 1 Adam Scott says he won’t be playing when the PGA Tour returns to action in June, as he has concerns over the protocols put into place for tournaments going forward.
Scott told the Australian Associated Press that he’s not completely comfortable with the PGA Tour’s Health and Safety Plan, saying that he sees holes in the tour’s policies.
Scott ‘Surprised’ Protocols Aren’t Tighter
The PGA Tour plans to return with the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas on June 8. Fans will not be in attendance for at least the first four tour events.
As part of its plan, the PGA Tour has released detailed steps for protecting players and staff. Those include having players self-test for COVID-19 before leaving for each tournament, administering tests on-site before the event begins, and then using daily screenings and thermal tests in an attempt to find anyone who may be symptomatic for the disease.
While Scott sees this as a good start, he says it may not be strict enough to protect players and prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
“They are being fairly thorough, but my initial reaction was, I was surprised it wasn’t tighter than it is,” Scott said in an interview with the AAP. “What concerns me is dialogue that [the PGA Tour] is hopeful of returning one- or two-hour test [results]. You’d want that in place before competing.”
Tour officials have acknowledged that the tests at its first tournaments will take 24 to 48 hours to process. The plan is to speed up that process as faster testing procedures become available.
Self-Isolation Could Add Weeks Away for Foreign Players
Scott says he has concerns over an asymptomatic person getting into a tournament, then testing positive during the event.
“If they’re not showing symptoms and I somehow pick it up inside the course and I’m disqualified, I’m not self-isolating for two weeks. I’d be annoyed if that happened.”
Scott is considering coming back for the St. Jude Invitational in late July. That would allow him to play one event before the rescheduled PGA Championship in San Francisco the next week.
“I’m definitely going to sit out and see how the first few weeks of the PGA Tour pan out and if things are progressing well, playing Memphis the week before the PGA is a thought,” he told the AAP. “I would have to think about staying in the United States through the US Open.”
Scott, a 39-year-old from Australia, has 31 professional wins to his name, including the 2013 Masters. He currently ranks sixth on the Official World Golf Ranking.
Scott isn’t the only player likely to skip at least the first few events during the PGA Tour’s return. Lee Westwood told the Golf Channel on Tuesday that while he has registered for the Charles Schwab Challenge and the RBC Heritage the following week, the self-isolation periods necessary while traveling between his home in the UK and the United States make the idea of playing uninviting.
“Right now, I won’t be playing them,” Westwood told the Golf Channel. “Not with having to leave here two weeks before, quarantine, then play the two tournaments, then come back here and quarantine again. It’s six weeks for two tournaments, and to me, that’s just not worth it.”