Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama has announced his withdrawal from The Open. Notably, Matsuyama tested positive for coronavirus during the Rocket Mortgage Classic last week. Although, he remains symptom-free but was still recording positive tests in the initial period of his self-isolation, denying him the opportunity to prepare for the final major of the year.
The Open, an event which did not take place in 2020 due to the pandemic, begins at Royal St. George's in Kent on July 15.
"I'm feeling fine but haven't been able to practice in preparation for The Open," said Matsuyama, who released a statement via the R&A.
"Combining that with the difficult travel to the UK, my team and I have decided it's best to withdraw to ensure everyone's safety. I feel badly missing The Open and look forward to playing again at St Andrews next year."
"I'd like to thank the many golf fans for their continued concern and support as I strive to return to the game I love as soon as possible."
Japan's Matsuyama won his first major at the Masters in April, beating Will Zalatoris by a single shot. Ranked 18th in the world, he has played in just five events since, including his withdrawal in Detroit last week.
Matsuyama is one of his country's medal hopes for the Olympic Games on home soil later this month. The decision from Matsuyama follows the Open withdrawals of Matthew Wolff, KH Lee and Danny Lee on Saturday. Kevin Na also pulled out last week for travel-related reasons.