Tiger Woods Pulls out of Genesis Open at Riviera; No. 1 Jason Day, Phil Mickelson, Jordan Spieth In

By Hoffarth, Tom | Daily News (Los Angeles, CA), February 10, 2017 | Go to article overview

Tiger Woods Pulls out of Genesis Open at Riviera; No. 1 Jason Day, Phil Mickelson, Jordan Spieth In


Hoffarth, Tom, Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)


Tiger Woods' latest ongoing battle with back issues has left him backing out of next week's PGA Tour Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club.

The 14-time major champion's participation was iffy even from the time he announced his optimistic intentions months ago, and it was cast with more doubt after he pulled out of an event in Dubai a week ago. A three-paragraph announcement posted on his website early Friday morning, about 10 hours before the official field was announced, made it official.

He added that recent back spasms as they relate to three back surgeries since 2014 would preclude the former No. 1 golfer in the world from also playing in the Feb. 23-26 Honda Classic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida near his home in Jupiter Beach.

"My doctors have advised me not to play the next two weeks, to continue my treatment and to let my back calm down," Woods said.

"This is not what I was hoping for or expecting. I am extremely disappointed to miss the Genesis Open, a tournament that benefits my foundation, and The Honda Classic, my hometown event. I would like to thank Genesis for their support, and I know we will have an outstanding week."

Woods followed the announcement on Twitter, linking to the story, and adding: "Really looking forward to seeing everyone @genesisopen open next week, unfortunately I won't be able to play."

Woods will still appear at the Pacific Palisades event earlier in the week -- the tournament proceeds benefit his Tiger Woods Foundation and Learning Center in Anaheim, and he wants to do as many meet-and-greets as possible with sponsors.

Mike Antolini, the Genesis Open tournament director as well as vice president of championships for the Tiger Woods Foundation, said Friday the "most important thing for him is to get healthy and we certainly support Tiger in that decision. We are still excited he will join us for the week, and the field still has 28 of the top 50 players committed with a major spotlight shined on Riviera. We always want Tiger to tee it up, but his connection to this tournament as a host is something that won't be lessened because of this."

Those 28 who officially entered by the 5 p.m. Friday deadline begins with current world No. 1 Jason Day, current U.S. Open champion Dustin Johnson (4) and former Riviera champions Adam Scott (7), Bubba Watson (13), Phil Mickelson (22). Scott won in 2005, Watson is the defending champion as well as winning in 2014 and Mickelson won back to back in 2008 and '09. Watson and Mickelson are also former Masters champions.

More ranked stars in the field include Hideki Matsuyama (5), 2015 Masters and U.S. Open champion Jordan Spieth (6), Sergio Garcia (9), 2013 U. …

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