PGA Tour

Westwood won't risk immediate PGA Tour return

Lee Westwood (PA/Supplied)
Lee Westwood (PA/Supplied)

Lee Westwood has said he will not travel to the US to compete on the PGA Tour until quarantine restrictions are relaxed.

The PGA Tour season is set to resume with the spectator-less Charles Schwab Challenge on 11 June, and Westwood is currently in the field for that event, as well as the following week's RBC Heritage.

But with travel restrictions in the United States currently enforcing a 14-day quarantine period for anyone entering the country, Westwood said he won't be honouring his commitments.

"I'm entered for the Colonial and the RBC Heritage as well as there's Top-50 in the world exemptions for those two events, but right now I won't be playing them," he told Golf Channel.

"Not with having to leave here two weeks before, quarantine, then play the two tournaments, then come back and quarantine again. It's six weeks for two tournaments and to me, it's just not worth it.

"It's not worth taking the risk if everybody thinks that those kind of precautions have got to be in place. I don't feel like golf's a priority, it's that severe."

After a recent career resurgence, which included victory at the 2019 Nedbank Challenge and January's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, the 47-year-old Westwood finds himself in the running for a record-equalling 11th Ryder Cup appearance later this year.

The win in Abu Dhabi saw him move into the qualification standings for European captain Padraig Harrington's side, but with so many tournaments getting cancelled and three of the four majors rescheduled for later in the year, Westwood believes the qualifying system may have to be changed.

"We haven't played any majors in the qualification process, there's a few World Golf Championships missed off there and there's a BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth, that we would finalise it in that's now looking like being moved and out of the qualifying," he added.

"I know we've only played for 37 percent of the points on the European Tour so a lot of things can happen. It's a tough one, but I think we might have to modify it a little bit.

"I think Padraig's pleased with the way the team's shaping up and how qualifying has gone, but at the same time there's some people on the outside of it who would have been some of the favourites to get in there. I'm glad I'm inside it right now and it feels like my fate is in my hands."

- TEAMtalk media

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