By Jay Betsill
Tiger Woods announced Tuesday on his website that he would be unable to play in the Masters due to having surgery on his back on Monday. It will be the first time in 20 years that the world’s No.1 player has missed the season’s first major.
“After attempting to get ready for the Masters, and failing to make the necessary progress, I decided, in consultation with my doctors, to have this procedure done,” Woods said in a statement. “I’d like to express my disappointment to the Augusta National membership, staff, volunteers and patrons that I will not be at the Masters. It’s a week that’s very special to me. It also looks like I’ll be forced to miss several upcoming tournaments to focus on my rehabilitation and getting healthy.”
No official word on his return, but ESPN injury analyst Stephania Bell estimates that the average recovery time for surgery like Woods had is 4 1/2 months.
The Masters begins April 10. Adam Scott is the defending champion.