Adding to the ever-growing list of names forgoing Olympic participation, world No. 3 Jordan Spieth has decided to skip the Summer Games. According to Ty Votaw of the International Golf Federation, Spieth cited health concerns as the reason he will not travel to Brasil.
His announcement now means that the current top four players in the world — Jason Day, Dustin Johnson, Spieth and Rory McIlroy — will all be absent in Rio next month. With Spieth’s withdrawal, Matt Kuchar will now represent the United States if he chooses to play.
Spieth’s decision comes on the heels of Rickie Fowler declaring he would play while Johnson, fresh off a U.S. Open title, declared Friday he would stay home. Although players dropping out is nothing new at this point, Spieth’s departure is seen as a crushing blow given his marketability and previously unbridled enthusiasm about playing. In addition to being front and center on Olympic golf commercials, Spieth is also a face on Coca-Cola’s six pack of Olympians. All the while, he may end up playing golf while the Olympics are going on due to the John Deere Classic being conducted the same week.
After K.T. Kim (world No. 41) and Victor Dubuisson also withdrew, there are currently only 18 of the top 60 players in the world planning to participate. See FULL LIST of male golfers slated to play in Rio (sub Kuchar for Spieth).