Dublin, OH — For a while, Rory McIlroy has not expressed certainty about participating in golf’s return to the Olympics. At his Wednesday press conference at the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance, a lot of uncertainty was removed.
“I’m ready to play,” McIlroy said. “I feel like the advice I’ve sought out over the past 10 days has put my mind at ease and makes me more comfortable going down there knowing that, even if I do contract Zika, it’s not the end of the world. It takes six months to pass through your system and you’re fine.”
This move goes against what several PGA Tour players have opted to do as Zika virus concerns have shied several players away.
McIlroy’s uncertainty was because of the Zika virus. Golf players are not the only ones who have been cautious for this reason as Major League Baseball cancelled games that were to be played in Puerto Rico between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Miami Marlins because of those concerns.
2014 European Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley recently said that there was “little chance” McIlroy would miss the Olympics and this statement supports the above claim.
“I think what the health experts are really worried about, is not the individual cases but the fact that 500,000 people go to Rio and they spend three weeks at the Games,” said McIlroy. “They go back out of Rio and some might have contracted Zika and don’t know about it, and then all of a sudden, instead of it being this virus that’s contained in a certain part of the world, it’s now a global epidemic.
“For me to go down there, even if I was to get Zika, it’s six months and it’s a virus, so it works its way out of your system. It’s nice that we can come back and feel like you’ve had some of the symptom and can tested for it.”