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Dylan Frittelli joins growing list of PGA Tour coronavirus withdrawals

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South African golfer Dylan Frittelli has tested positive for the coronavirus and has withdrawn from next week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic, the PGA Tour announced Sunday.

Frittelli, currently ranked No. 105 in the world, competed at this week’s Travelers Championship, where golfers Cameron Champ and Denny McCarthy and caddies for Brooks Koepka and Graeme McDowell all tested positive for COVID-19.

Frittelli will now self-isolate, with the PGA Tour’s support.

A statement from the golfer, via the Tour:

“I am experiencing no issues and feel great physically and was surprised and disappointed to learn of the positive test today,” said Frittelli. “I’m thankful for the WHOOP strap notification of a minor increase [0.3] in my respiratory rate overnight. However, I’m most thankful for the TOUR’s assistance, procedures and protocols, which I will continue to follow during my self-isolation, so as to keep everyone safe. I look forward to getting back on TOUR once it’s safe to do so.”

Frittelli missed the cut at the Travelers, and finished tied for eighth at last week’s RBC Heritage.

Dylan Frittelli, of South Africa, watches his tee shot on the second hole during the third round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament, Saturday, March 7, 2020, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Four golfers have now tested positive for the coronavirus. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

A total of four golfers have now tested positive for the virus since the PGA Tour returned to action earlier this month: Frittelli, McCarthy, Champ and Nick Watney. Other golfers have felt the effects of the virus as well, including Koepka, McDowell and Webb Simpson, who pulled out of the Travelers after a family member tested positive.

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said there are plans to tweak the Tour’s health protocols after the events of the Travelers, via Golf Digest:

“While we’ve been thorough in building and implementing a program that mitigates as much risk as possible, we knew it would be impossible to eliminate all risk, as evidenced by the three positive tests this week,” Monahan said at TPC River Highlands, a day before the first round of the Travelers. “We need to use these developments as a stark reminder for everyone involved as we continue to learn from an operational standpoint.

“We’re making several adjustments to our health and safety plan as noted in the memo sent to players this morning, and we will continuously reinforce to all players, caddies, staff members and support personnel on property at PGA Tour events to adhere to social distancing and other safety professionals that further minimize risk.

While a golfer testing positive for COVID-19 after competing in a tournament should be cause for concern, the PGA Tour said in a statement it determined no additional testing was required after conducting contact tracing on Frittelli’s activity.

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