Sports | March 3, 2020 6:00 am

Dustin Johnson Will Skip Olympic Golf Tournament Near Tokyo

Johnson is the first top player to announce he's taking a pass on the event

Dustin Johnson Will Skip Olympic Golf Tournament Near Tokyo
Dustin Johnson plays a shot during the first round of the World Golf Championships. (Rob Carr/Getty)
Getty Images

Though the Summer Olympics are nearly five months away, top American golfer Dustin Johnson has already decided he will be skipping the men’s golf tournament outside of Tokyo this summer. The fifth-ranked player in the world, Johnson is the first high-profile player who will pass on attending the event, but likely won’t be the last.

Confirming Johnson’s decision, his agent David Winkle didn’t cite concern over the coronavirus as a reason for his client skipping the tournament. Instead, Winkle said Johnson wants to be prepared for the FedEx Cup playoffs, which begin 11 days after the Olympic tournament with the Northern Trust in Boston.

“You just can’t do it all, given the newly compressed schedule,” Winkle told ESPN. “Dustin and others learned a lot about themselves and what works for them last year, so I applaud him for not overextending himself and keeping his personal priorities in line.”

Though he was eligible for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, Johnson opted not to play due to concerns over the Zika virus. The winner of the 2016 U.S. Open., 35-year-old Johnson is a 20-time PGA Tour winner.

The 2020 Olympics are still set to begin on time despite concerns over the coronavirus, and they’re scheduled to take place starting July 24.

“The IOC is fully committed to have the opening ceremony there on July 24 in Tokyo,” IOC President Thomas Bach said last week. “I’m not ready to add fuel to the flames of speculation there in any way.”

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