Tiger Woods, a two-time winner of THE PLAYERS Championship, has announced that he will not tee it up at next week’s tournament at the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass.
Woods personally informed PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan of the decision before the news broke.
‘It was not an easy decision, but I will not be attending @THEPLAYERSChamp,’ he said.
‘I have to listen to my body and properly rest when needed. My back is simply just not ready for play next week. I’m sad to miss one of the best events of the season, OUR Championship.’
The announcement by the 82-time PGA TOUR winner comes amid a longer than usual layoff after he cited back stiffness and opted not to play in this week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational, a tournament he has won eight times, most recently in 2013.
Woods, 44, would move out of a tie with Sam Snead for the all-time wins record with his next victory. He hasn’t competed since a 68th-place finish at the Genesis Invitational at Riviera, where he has famously never won, on Feb. 16. He finished T9 at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines (where he’s won eight times as a pro) before that.
It hasn’t been long, though, since the future World Golf Hall of Famer was in the winner’s circle. Woods won the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP last fall and went undefeated as playing captain at the Presidents Cup. He is 26th in the FedExCup, but did not play at the Arnold Palmer Invitational because of injury for the second straight year.
Last year Woods bounced back from a neck injury to finish T30 at THE PLAYERS, and four weeks later rallied to win the Masters Tournament for his 15th major.
Woods won THE PLAYERS in 2001 and 2013 and is 11th in the latest world ranking.