Swine flu causes concern for LPGA players in Mexico


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LPGA Tour _newFinal-round angst of a different nature heightened considerably Sunday at the Corona Championship in Mexico with player concerns growing over news of the potentially deadly strain of swine flu virus spreading in that country.
'It's definitely scary,' said Brittany Lincicome, the Kraft Nabisco champion who missed the cut at Morelia, home to the Corona Championship. 'It's a very serious situation, and I'm just praying none of the girls gets sick. I feel fine.'
Lincicome was back home in Seminole, Fla., and out of the country by the time weekend news reports grew more serious about the deadly dimension of the virus. Mexican health officials report 81 deaths in that country are likely linked to the virus. Morelia is about 200 miles west of Mexico City, where news reports Sunday detailed how churches and bars were empty, how sporting events were canceled and how schools are being shut down as the city slows to a snail's pace.
Jane Park withdrew from the Corona Championship on Saturday after two holes because of illness. She reported being sick to her stomach. Her agent, Michael Yim, told an IMG spokesman Sunday that it appears to have been merely something she ate and nothing more serious. Still, her withdrawal heightened player concerns.
Over the weekend, LPGA players received up to three e-mails from the tour's tournament operations office outlining specifics of the swine-flu threat and precautions players should take.
'They were very detailed and included what symptoms to look for, what to do if we aren't feeling well and how we should immediately see a doctor if we become sick,' Lincicome said.
LPGA player family members who didn't make the Mexico trip anxiously followed news reports while awaiting the return of loved ones Sunday night. Herb Krickstein, a retired doctor who is grandfather to Morgan Pressel, followed the tournament and the swine-flu news from a computer at his Boca Raton home on Sunday.
'We just hope Morgan gets out of there without getting anything,' Krickstein said. 'Obviously, what's happening is worrisome.'
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