Four-time champion Tiger Woods has confirmed that he will miss next week’s Masters at Augusta National as he continues to nurse a back injury.
The former world number one has been out of action since August 2015 and has been under the knife on two occasions to try and cure the problem.
The 40-year-old has previously confirmed that he is against the idea of further surgery and has also hinted that retirement is a possibility.
However, for the time being, Woods – who finished tied 17th last year at Augusta having missed the previous year through injury – is still hoping to return to action and try to climb back up the world rankings.
Woods, who won the Masters in 1997, 2001, 2002 and 2005 has admitted that the 2016 edition of the event has come too soon but insists he is making progress with his injury.
Woods said in a statement on his website: “After assessing the present condition of my back, and consulting with my medical team, I’ve decided it’s prudent to miss this year’s Masters.
“I’ve been hitting balls and training daily, but I’m not physically ready. I’ve said all along that this time I need to be cautious and do what’s best for my long-term health and career.
“Unfortunately, playing Augusta next week wouldn’t be the right decision. I’m absolutely making progress, and I’m really happy with how far I’ve come, but I still have no timetable to return to competitive golf.”