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Marina Alex tests positive for COVID-19 before trip to Ohio for LPGA restart

Marina Alex

Marina Alex tested positive for COVID-19 in the LPGA’s pre-travel phase of testing last week, before departure for the Drive On Championship in Toledo, Ohio, the tour announced Thursday.

Alex has withdrawn from this week’s event despite her report that she has tested negative three times since that initial positive test.

Gaby Lopez won’t get the chance to add to her two LPGA titles when the tour makes its restart at the Drive On Championship in Toledo, Ohio, this week.

Gaby Lopez tested positive after arriving at the tournament site on Monday.

They are the only two LPGA players to test positive so far.

A caddie, who wasn’t named, also tested positive in pre-travel testing last week and did not make the trip, the tour reported.

Alex, 29, said in a statement released on Twitter that she “exhausted every resource possible to be able to compete at Inverness” after returning those three negative tests.

Wristbands and lanyards having become the ultimate status symbols for LPGA players competing in the first event back in action amid the coronavirus pandemic.

She was tested on July 21.

“I am very fortunate that I have not experienced any symptoms of COVID over the last 9 days,” she wrote. “I know this virus has affected so many lives and it is not something I am taking lightly. At the advice of my primary care physician I have remained in isolation while continuing a testing regiment [sic] which has successfully produced 3 negative tests in the last 7 days. I have exhausted every resource possible to be able to compete at Inverness, however due to current CDC guidelines and the current protocols the LPGA has put in place for our safety my official clearance date does not allow me to compete this week. I am really looking forward to returning to competition next week at the Marathon Classic. Thank you again to my doctors and sponsors for their support. Good luck to girls competing this week.”

The LPGA reports that it conducted 233 pre-travel tests of players and caddies prior to departing for the Drive On Championship. Alex and the caddie were the only positive tests.

The tour also reports 233 players and caddies were tested upon arrival at Inverness Club in pre-tournament screening. Lopez was the only positive test, though two other player tests are still pending, after initial testing was inconclusive. Lopez has withdrawn from the event, has self-isolated and has been working with Tour and local health officials on contact tracing.

The LPGA reported that a total of 205 players and caddies were tested prior to traveling to the Symetra Tour’s FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship in Battle Creek, Michigan, which took place July 24-26. One Symetra Tour member, Fatima Fernandez Cano, tested positive and withdrew from the event. She has since recovered and has been cleared to return to play.