Rolex world No. 1 Lydia Ko withdrew from the Volunteers of America Texas Shootout Saturday morning due to a viral eye infection.
Ko has been fighting allergies all week due to pollens in the air in the Dallas area, which worsened the irritation, according to her agent, Michael Yim.
“Her left eye started swelling up yesterday,” Yim told GolfChannel.com. “It got so bad, she said she couldn’t see the little white alignment line on her putter.”
After opening with a 1-under-par 70 Thursday, Ko struggled to a 73 on Friday, with the irritation of the eye worsening. With an afternoon start to the second round, Ko didn’t finish until the early evening, after eye doctor offices were closed. Yim sought the help of some friends, who connected Ko with an eye doctor who was able to treat her after hours.
“The doctor gave Lydia a prescription and eye gel to help her, but he said she shouldn’t wear her contact lenses,” Yim said.
The reason for Ko’s withdrawal was originally reported to tour officials as “eye disease,” but Yim said it’s an infection. She suffered a similar issue at the ANA Inspiration last year, when she had to play the second round with just one contact lens, due to an irritation, one that wasn’t as serious as she’s dealing with in Dallas.