In an interview with GOLF LIVE’s Ryan Asselta today, LPGA star Stacy Lewis shared her excitement about the upcoming Olympics in Rio—and her disappointment that so many male golfers had already dropped out.
Ranked eighth in the world, Lewis is all but guaranteed a place on the American Olympic golf team alongside Lexi Thompson. She said that playing in the Olympics has been a goal of hers since she heard that golf would be returning to the games.
“I want to be there,” she said. “I think it’s a great thing that golf is in the Olympics.” Lewis cited the global exposure that Rio’s world stage could bring to golf as one of the best effects of the new event.
But golf’s return to the Olympics is already in turmoil, with some of the game’s best players refusing to go to Rio. Many of them have blamed the Zika virus.
Zika is arguably more of a direct threat to women, and yet only one eligible female golfer has dropped out of the Olympics so far. For the men, it’s a different story; multiple top players won’t be going, with quite a few others wavering on the edge of withdrawal. “I think it’s a little bit disappointing the way the guys have been about it,” Lewis said. “The Zika stuff is a concern and I certainly understand it. Other than that I don’t think there is too much of an excuse not to go.”