Tiger Woods underwent back surgery for a pinched nerve and will miss his first Masters since 1994 he announced on Twitter on Tuesday.
Woods, a four-time Masters champion, had the surgery performed in Park City, Utah on Monday. He said he hopes to be back at some point in the summer.
Sad to say I’m missing the Masters. Thanks to the fans for so many kind wishes. http://t.co/Ofbre9VHEL— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) April 1, 2014
Woods, the No. 1 player in the world, has won the Masters four times, but he has not donned a green jacket since 2005. He was won no major championship since 2008. Woods aggravated his back at the Honda Classic which ended with a Sunday withdrawal from the most recognizable face in the game. After playing through the pain at Doral, he was forced to withdraw at Bay Hill last month before the Arnold Palmer Invitational even began.
This missed major will now make it three in the last four years that Woods wasn’t able to play in because of health, and while he almost always seems like the favorite when he arrives at any site, there is a very real possibility that we could never see Woods ever raise another major trophy.
Woods made no indication of when he thinks he will return, but said that hopefully it will be at some point this summer. The second major championship of the year, the U.S. Open, kicks off on June 12 so he will just over two months to get back on the course.
Woods said on his website that he will begin "intensive rehabilitation" and while disappointed, knows he needed to get this done for his health moving forward.
"I'd also like to thank the fans for their support and concern. It's very kind and greatly appreciated. This is frustrating, but it's something my doctors advised me to do for my immediate and long-term health."
A year ago it was a flagstick that held him back at Augusta National, and now it’s the body that he has worked so hard to perfect that just won’t hold up anymore no matter how hard he works at it.