Jack Nicklaus reveals positive test for COVID-19

Jack Nicklaus

Golf legend Jack Nicklaus has revealed that he and his wife both tested positive for coronavirus.

During a rain delay at the Memorial Tournament, the 18-time major champion announced that he and his wife of 60 years contracted COVID-19 in March. 

The couple self-isolated at home in Florida from March 13 to April 20, with Nicklaus adding that he has since subsequently returned a positive test for the coronavirus anti-body.

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"Barbara was asymptomatic and I had a sore throat and a cough," said the 80-year-old. "We're both in an at-risk age. Our hearts go out to people who did lose lives and their families. We were just a couple of the lucky ones."

Nicklaus had raised eyebrows earlier in the week when he revealed that he intended to continue with his time-honoured tradition of being the first to shake the hand of the new Memorial champion.

"I'm going to shake their hand," he said in his pre-tournament press conference. "I going to walk right out there and shake your hand. If they don't want to shake my hand, that's fine. I'll give them a fist bump or an elbow bump.

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"But I'm not going to give them COVID-19. I wouldn't put anybody in that position. I wouldn't do that, and if I was in any danger of doing that, I wouldn't shake their hands."

This is the first time that Nicklaus has publicly acknowledged he and his wife's diagnoses although it is understood that the couple's son, Jack Nicklaus II, previously told Nicklaus Companies representatives and associates.

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