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PGA Tour players grouped together after virus recovery

UPDATED: Wed., July 8, 2020

In this June 18, 2020 photo, Nick Watney signals after a tee shot during the first round of the RBC Heritage Golf tournament at Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head, S.C. Watney tested positive for coronavirus.  (Associated Press)
In this June 18, 2020 photo, Nick Watney signals after a tee shot during the first round of the RBC Heritage Golf tournament at Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head, S.C. Watney tested positive for coronavirus. (Associated Press)
Associated Press

Three players who have tested positive for the coronavirus but are no longer symptomatic will play together at the Workday Charity Open, the PGA Tour announced Wednesday in the latest revision of its COVID-19 policies.

Nick Watney – the first tour player to test positive – will play alongside Dylan Frittelli and Denny McCarthy during the first two rounds at Muirfield Village in Dublin, Ohio, the tour said.

All three players continue to test positive for the virus but have met the Centers for Disease Control criteria for returning to work, the tour said. Players in those circumstances will either be grouped together or play as singles. They will also have no access to indoor facilities at the tournament site.

Watney reported mild symptoms after he tested positive before the RBC Heritage in Hilton Head, South Carolina. He self-isolated for 10 days before driving back home to Austin, Texas.

Frittelli tested positive after missing the cut at the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Connecticut. McCarthy tested positive after the first round of the Travelers.

The tour said it made the change because players can continue to test positive even after the infectious virus is no longer present and they have met all other CDC criteria. Those include: no fever for at least three days, improvement in respiratory symptoms and a period of at least 10 days since symptoms first appeared.

Last week, the tour allowed players and caddies to return if a positive test is followed by two negative tests at least 24 hours apart and they show no symptoms. That change allowed Cameron Champ to play at the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit, where he finished in a tie for 12th.

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