The much anticipated return of Tiger Woods to competitive golf has been put on hold. According to the Golf Channel's Tim Rosaforte, he will not play in this week's Safeway Open in Napa. He also will not play in the Turkish Airlines Open in November.
Just three days ago, Woods announced in a press release that he would be playing in this week PGA Tour opener. He released the following statement today announcing his decision to withdraw:
"After a lot of soul searching and honest reflection, I know that I am not yet ready to play on the PGA TOUR or compete in Turkey. My health is good, and I feel strong, but my game is vulnerable and not where it needs to be.
"When I announced last week I was going to Safeway, I had every intention of playing, or I wouldn't have committed. I spent a week with the U.S. Ryder Cup Team, an honor and experience that inspired me even more to play. I practiced the last several days in California, but after a lot of hours, I knew I wasn't ready to compete against the best golfers in the world. I will continue to work hard, and plan to play at my foundation's event, the Hero World Challenge, in Albany.
"I would like to apologize and send my regrets to Safeway, the Turkish Airlines Open, the fans in California and Turkey and those that had hoped to watch me compete on TV. This isn't what I wanted to happen, but I will continue to strive to be able to play tournament golf. I'm close, and I won't stop until I get there."
In his last start on the PGA Tour, the 14-time major champion and 79-time PGA Tour winner finished T10 at the Wyndham Championship in August of 2015. It was his only top-10 in 11 starts that 2014-15 season. Just after that, he left the PGA Tour for another back surgery and has endured over a year of rehabbing since.
Woods, who once spent a record 281 consecutive weeks as the No. 1-ranked player in the world, would have begun the Safeway Open ranked 786th.
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