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World No. 1 Jon Rahm withdraws from The Players due to illness

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FL - MARCH 09: Jon Rahm of Spain hits a drive at the 7th hole during the first round of THE PLAYERS Championship on THE PLAYERS Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass on March 09, 2023 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Jon Rahm withdrew from The Players Championship on Friday morning after shooting a 71 on Thursday. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) (Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Jon Rahm was forced to withdraw from The Players Championship on Friday.

The tournament cited an illness as the reason for Rahm’s withdrawal. He shot a 1-under 71 on Thursday in the first round of the tournament.

Rahm entered The Players as the No. 1 player in the Official World Golf Rankings and was grouped with Scottie Scheffler and Rory McIlroy for the first two rounds of the tournament. Scheffler and McIlroy are the two players directly behind Rahm in the OWGR and have both spent significant time at No. 1 over the past year.

Before withdrawing from the tournament, Rahm had the longest active cuts made streak on the PGA Tour. Rahm hadn't missed a cut in 25 starts dating back to the 2021 Fortinet Championship.

Rahm surged to the No. 1 spot with an incredible start to 2023. He won the Sentry Tournament of Champions and the American Express in back-to-back starts in January and won the Genesis in February. Before finishing tied for 39th at the Arnold Palmer Invitational a week ago thanks to consecutive 76s, Rahm hadn’t finished lower than eighth in a tournament during the entire 2022-23 PGA Tour season.

Rahm was seven strokes back of Chad Ramey after the first round on Thursday. He was three shots back of Scheffler after their round together and five ahead of McIlroy.