Marc Leishman Out of Olympics due to Zika Virus Concerns

He's the second Australian to pull out

Marc Leishman

The Australian becomes the latest player to pull out of the games due to the virus that is circulating through Brazil and South America

Marc Leishman has become the latest golfer to pull out of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

His reasoning is down to fears over the Zika virus, which he does not want to transmit to his wife who suffered from toxic shock syndrome last year.

2016 Rio Olympics Golf: How to Qualify?

The Zika virus is carried by mosquitos in Brazil and throughout South America and has become a global public health emergency.

It is believed to lead to babies being born with underdeveloped brains.

Marc Leishman has nine professional wins worldwide, including the 2012 Travelers Championship on the PGA Tour and the 2015 Nedbank Golf Challenge on the European Tour.

Marc Leishman wins Nedbank Golf Challenge

Marc Leishman wins Nedbank Golf Challenge

Last month, Leishman's compatriot Adam Scott also pulled out of the Olympics over scheduling issues and personal commitments.

Team Australia looked to be world number one Jason Day and Adam Scott, but Scott's withdrawal meant number 35 Leishman would take his spot.

Now, going down the Official World Golf Rankings, it looks like current world number 63 Marcus Fraser will partner Jason Day for team Australia.

Fraser has three European Tour victories, with his last coming at the 2016 Maybank Championship.

South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel and Fiji's Vijay Singh have also pulled out of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games where golf is being played for the first time since 1904.

Rio 2016 Olympic Games Golf Course Marc Leishman

Rio's 2016 Olympic Golf Course

Last week, Gary Player released a statement showing his disappointment towards his countrymen who have pulled out.

2016 Rio Olympics Golf: The Course

Leishman said, "It was a difficult yet easy decision not to participate."

Australian team chef de mission Kitty Chiller said, "We understand that family must always come first and we respect Marc's decision not to play in Rio."

The 2016 Rio Olympic Golf mens tournament is to be played from the 11th-14th August and the ladies tournament will be played from 17th-20th August.

Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV