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SA's Branden Grace withdraws from PGA event with COVID-19

Grace scored 10 points in each of the first two rounds under the Modified Stableford scoring system to stand only two adrift of leader Kyle Stanley entering the third round on the Old Greenwood course at Tahoe Mountain Club in Truckee, California.

FILE: Branden Grace. Picture: AFP

LOS ANGELES - South Africa's Branden Grace withdrew from the PGA Barracuda Championship on Saturday after testing positive for COVID-19, the US PGA Tour announced.

Grace scored 10 points in each of the first two rounds under the Modified Stableford scoring system to stand only two adrift of leader Kyle Stanley entering the third round on the Old Greenwood course at Tahoe Mountain Club in Truckee, California.

"I felt great all week," Grace said Saturday in a statement. "Last night, I was tired and thought it had to do with the altitude.

"This morning, I notified the PGA Tour about my symptoms before going to the golf course. I wanted to get tested out of respect for my peers and everyone involved with the tournament.

"While it is unfortunate given my position on the leaderboard, the most important thing is our health."

Grace will have a self-isolation period of 10 days under PGA protocols and US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.

Grace's caddie tested negative for COVID-19 but will quarantine for 14 days under tour and CDC guidelines.

The PGA Tour implemented contact tracing upon those who might have been in close contact with Grace and tour medical advisors "are not recommending any additional testing at this time."

Most of the world's top golfers are not at the tournament, instead playing at the WGC St. Jude Invitational or taking the week off ahead of next week's first major of the year, the PGA Championship at San Francisco.

The deadly virus outbreak shut down the tour from March until June before events resumed without spectators and with safeguards for those at events.

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