Henrik Stenson on Olympics: 'I'm not afraid of mosquitoes'

Henrik Stenson on Olympics: 'I'm not afraid of mosquitoes'

PGA Tour

Henrik Stenson on Olympics: 'I'm not afraid of mosquitoes'

By

While other top golfers are dropping out of the Olympics because of the mosquito-borne Zika virus and other concerns, Henrik Stenson remains committed to representing Sweden in Rio de Janeiro.

“I’m not afraid of mosquitoes. I’m more afraid of bears,” Stenson said Wednesday at the Scottish Open. He then got serious, adding: “I’ve been looking forward to playing in Rio for quite some time.”

The Zika virus is a legitimate concern, especially for young golfers looking to start or continue families. At age 40, married and with three children, Stenson said he is past that stage of his life.

“I’m in a different situation, and it might be the only time when it’s a competitive advantage to be 40-plus and done with the bambino thing,” Stenson said. “I’ve got three kids at home, and I’m not looking to have any more. I might be in a different situation then, but the Zika virus is not a concern of mine.”

Stenson, No. 6 in the Official World Golf Ranking, could be as high as the second-ranked male golfer in Rio. World No. 1 Jason Day and No. 4 Rory McIlroy already have withdrawn. No. 2 Dustin Johnson and No. 3 Jordan Spieth have yet to announced their Olympic plans, but both have expressed concerns about going to Rio. (Click here for the full list of Olympics WDs to date.)

“If I can go there, compete and compete well, if I make myself and my country happy, that would be something very special,” Stenson said. “I have a few nice trophies at home, and it would be nice to hang an Olympic medal next to them. I think that would look kind of cool.”

Stenson also was asked whether he thought this year’s Olympic defections would hurt golf’s chances of staying in the Olympics beyond the 2020 Tokyo Games.

“I guess we’ll just have to wait and see,” Stenson said. “It’s hard to know how everything’s going to work out, how it’s going to be and all the rest of it. But like with any competition, five years down the line, you’re not going to think about who wasn’t there. You’re going to think about who won the medals.”

For Stenson, he hopes he will be one of those medal-winners, preferably gold.

Latest

More Golfweek
Home