Tiger Woods has announced that he will not play again this year after having a second successful surgery on his back – a repeat of the microdiscectomy that he underwent in 2014.
The American has suffered countless injury setbacks since 2010 and has been forced to pull out of several events, including The Barclays two years ago when he collapsed to his knees because of the pain.
“This is certainly disappointing, but I’m a fighter,” Woods said in a statement on his official website after his surgery in Utah. “I’ve been told I can make a full recovery, and I have no doubt that I will.”
This latest disappointment is unfortunate timing for the former world number one, who recorded his best finish of 2015 when coming 10th in his most recent outing in August’s Wyndham Championship.
He had planned to play in the Frys.com Open, Bridgestone America’s Golf Cup in Mexico City and the Hero World Challenge before the end of the year, but he has had to withdraw from those events.
Woods added: “I’d like to send my regrets to Frys and all those associated with the America’s Golf Cup. Those were two events I was really looking forward to playing. I was ready to start the 2015-16 PGA TOUR season at Frys, and I was excited to join my good friend Matt [Kuchar] in Mexico City.
“I will be attending my foundation-hosted Hero World Challenge but won’t be able to play. I appreciate everything Hero does for the Tiger Woods Foundation, and I have a great personal relationship with Mr. Munjal [vice chairman and CEO of Hero MotoCorp]. I look forward to being there to support my event.
“I appreciate the fans’ concern and support. This is unfortunate, but these things happen. I’ve been injured before and played again. It won’t be any different this time.”
Woods’s determination to come back stronger is admirable and typical of his character, but time, and his body, appear to be against him if he is to return to the shape that saw him win 14 major titles.
The 39-year-old, who has dropped down to 283 in the world rankings after a total of 683 weeks at number one, last triumphed in one of golf’s big four events at the 2008 US Open at Torrey Pines.
Still chasing Jack Nicklaus’s record of 18 major triumphs, Woods finished in the top 20 at this year’s Masters, but missed the cuts at the US Open, Open Championship and USPGA Championship.
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