By Frank Pingue
(Reuters) - Spaniard Jon Rahm said on Tuesday he would not miss the birth of his first child and was prepared to walk away from the Masters at a moment's notice to ensure he would be by his wife's side for the special occasion.
World number three Rahm said his wife was due to give birth between April 10 and 12, a three-day stretch that includes the final two rounds of the year's first major at Augusta National Golf Club.
"All I can say is if anybody's thinking of betting on me on the Masters, maybe think about it twice because there's a chance I have to just turn around and leave that week," Rahm said from Austin Country Club ahead of this week's WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play event.
Rahm has five PGA Tour victories but has yet to triumph at one of golf's four major tournaments. His best showing at the Masters came in 2018 when he finished fourth.
The 26-year-old Spaniard said his wife and son were doing well and that he was unsure how much he could rely on the due date.
"I hear all kinds of stories, right, from people saying, oh, first one is always late, two people say, well, no, mine were early, this and that," said Rahm.
"So I don't know. I'm excited about it. I'm trying to take it one day at a time. And I can tell you I'm ready to go at any moment's notice."
Rahm will face Ryan Palmer, former British Open champion Shane Lowry and Sebastian Munoz in round-robin play this week in Austin where the winner of each group advances to a 16-player knockout phase.
"If I have to leave this week, hopefully it doesn't come when I'm in the final and I just have to leave after nine holes. I mean, that would be unfortunate for the winner, but it is what it is," said Rahm.
"Being a father is much more important than any golf event would ever be, so that's my head right now."
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; editing by Clare Fallon)