Marc Leishman withdraws from Rio Olympics due to Zika virus concerns

Leishman says not competing at the Olympics was “a difficult yet easy decision not to participate.”

Marc Leishman has withdrawn from the Rio Olympics citing concerns about the Zika virus. Leishman’s wife came very close to death, and he had even said his last goodbye’s when she became ill just a few weeks before the 2015 Masters.

With this in mind and after consulting with doctors, Leishman has made the decision not to travel to Brazil for the Olympics. In a media release from the PGA of Australia, Leishman described it as “a difficult yet easy decision not to participate.”

Leishman’s decision to not compete in Rio comes off the back of a turbulent 12-months for the PGA TOUR winner, after almost losing his wife Audrey to Toxic Shock Syndrome – a rare and potentially life-threatening illness.

“Last April my children and I almost lost my wife Audrey to Toxic Shock Syndrome. Since then Audrey has been prone to infection and is far removed from 100% recovery of her immune system,” Leishman said.

“We have consulted with Audrey’s physician and due to her ongoing recovery and potential risks associated with the transmission of the Zika virus it was a difficult yet easy decision not to participate.”

Leishman was next in line to represent Australia (along with Jason Day) after Adam Scott announced he would not be in Rio. Marcus Fraser is now the next best Australian on the official world golf rankings and will be making his decision, along with Day, in the coming months.

The official Australian Olympic golf team will be announced on July 11.

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