Another golf legend has sounded off regarding players ditching the 2016 Olympics.
Proud South African and nine-time major-winner Gary Player posted a lengthy note on Twitter Monday afternoon detailing his disappointment with some of the top players in the world withdrawing from the August event in Brazil.
World No. 7 Adam Scott and No. 13 Louis Oosthuizen, a South African, withdrew from consideration last week, which was just a week after Vijay Singh dropped out. According to Player’s note, No. 20 Charl Schwartzel has also withdrawn. (International Golf Federation Vice-President Ty Votaw confirmed Schwartzel’s WD to GOLF.com.)
In the statement Player said: “I would have given anything to play in the Olympics. South Africa had a great team, but now obviously, it will not be as good.”
The trend of players skipping the Olympic competition has often been labeled as a scheduling issue, and the IGF has taken notice. IGF President Peter Dawson said in a statement last week: “The IGF understands the challenges players face in terms of scheduling this summer and it is regrettable to see a few leading players withdraw from this year’s Games.
“The Olympics is the world’s greatest celebration of sport and it is exciting and appropriate that golf features in its programme again. Real history will be made at this year’s Olympic competitions and it is our belief that the unique experience of competing will live forever with athletes that take part.”
As for team South Africa, players who would qualify for the event as of today are Branden Grace and Jaco Van Zyl. You can read Player’s entire note below.