For the second consecutive year, Tiger Woods will miss The Masters.
While the announcement is not surprising given Woods’ back injury, it’s still unfortunate for him and his fans.
The four-time Masters champion released a statement through his website:
“Unfortunately, I won’t be competing in this year’s Masters. I did about everything I could to play, but my back rehabilitation didn’t allow me the time to get tournament ready. I’m especially upset because it’s a special anniversary for me that’s filled with a lot of great memories. I can’t believe it’s been 20 years since I won my first green jacket.
“I have no timetable for my return, but I will continue my diligent effort to recover, and want to get back out there as soon as possible.
“I’d like to pass along my regrets to Billy Payne, the Augusta National membership, staff, volunteers and patrons, that I won’t be there. I will be at the Champions Dinner and I look forward to seeing a lot of old friends.
“Augusta National has been a very important place to me and my family for over 20 years, and while I’m disappointed, it will be good to be back there Tuesday.”
This year’s Masters marks the 20-year anniversary since Woods won his first green jacket. He won by a record 12 shots at 18-under.
It would have been special to watch him play this year on the fabled course at Augusta, but it was just not meant to be.
Woods’ agent, Mark Steinberg, provided some additional details to ESPN:
“He was grinding pretty hard on this one. Because the Masters has such a special place in his heart, and because it’s been such a special tournament for him, he really wanted to try and be there. And knowing the course so well, the local knowledge, he figured he had a chance to play. He grinded on this up until today.”
Steinberg also added, “He just didn’t feel he was ready.”
At 41 years old, it would not make sense for Woods to force the issue right now and potentially set himself back even more. Hopefully he will return to the course this season.
h/t: tigerwoods.com, espn.com