Former world No.1 Dustin Johnson has incurred the wrath of Twitter users and golf fans after television cameras repeatedly caught him spitting during the RBC Heritage.
Johnson, who turns 36 today, was spotted gobbing on the greens at Habour Town Golf Links on several occasions across the four rounds.
This prompted many to point out that not only is it a bad habit, it is particularly poor to do so in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, and particularly as transmission of the disease is believed to occur mainly through respiratory droplets generated by coughing and sneezing, and through contact with contaminated surfaces.
The tour has only just returned from a three-month coronavirus-enforced hiatus. However, the positive test of Nick Watney, revealed during the second round of the RBC Heritage, has prompted many to scrutinise the circuit’s safety protocols more closely – and Johnson’s persistent spitting has done little to help its case.
Here’s a selection of Twitter reactions to the former US Open champ’s expectorating…
Watching the golf from Harbour Town and Dustin Johnson is spitting. Is nobody in the States taking this Virus seriously? It’s a disgusting habit at the best of times but he should be thrown off the course.— Marilyn Brown (@Marilyn51126643) June 18, 2020
@DJohnsonPGA spitting on the golf course disgusting at the best of times but seriously have you hear of coronavirus— Niccy Whittaker (@niccywhittaker) June 19, 2020
@PGATOUR why are you allowing players to spit? Brookes Koepka & Dustin Johnson keep spitting in close proximity to the green where people’s ball will be then picked up by them- this isn’t soccer and a sure way to spread #COVID19— Victoria (@vixmccarthy43) June 20, 2020
It should be pointed out that Johnson was not the only player guilty of spitting. However, he does have previous and was called out for the behaviour following his victory in the 2016 BMW Championship.
Johnson ultimately finished in a tie for 17th at Harbour Town as Webb Simpson captured his seventh career victory on the PGA Tour.
What do you think of players spitting on the golf course? Do you have an issue with it? If so, how do you think the PGA Tour should punish offenders? Leave your thoughts in our Comments section below.