Tiger Woods pulls out of Dubai Desert Classic due to back spasms

Tiger Woods, former world No.1, has suffered another setback in his comeback as he pulled out of the Dubai Desert Classic tournament due to lower back spasms.

other sports Updated: Feb 03, 2017 16:53 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Tiger Woods,Dubai Desert Classic,Golf
Tiger Woods was out of action for 15 months during the 2015/16 season due to a back injury, the longest injury lay-off in his career.(Getty Images)

Adding credence to the talk on Thursday evening that Tiger Woods may have been in pain during the opening day of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, the former world No. 1 pulled out before tee off on Friday due to a lower back spasm.

After shooting five-over 77 on Day One, Tiger was asked if he was in discomfort, given his swing. He replied in the negative, saying, “I was just trying to hit shots and wasn’t doing a very good job.”

Talking to reporters, his agent, Mark Steinberg, said though he didn’t meet Tiger at dinner last night, all was well, and the pain was felt late on Thursday. “The treatment (Tiger’s trainer is with him this week) was started early and even after three-and-half hours of working on it, the spasm did not subside. He is able to move but can’t make a full rotation on the swing.”

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Steinberg said Tiger had suffered spasms before and was confident it would subside. “Forget about the long term, the short-term prognosis is he hopes he’ll be strong. It’s not that nerve pain and that’s very encouraging for him.”

Asked if the long flight had a role to play, Steinberg was evasive. “There are so many factors that could play into it. I don’t know what causes a back to go into a spasm.”

Asked to elaborate, he said, “Look, he doesn’t have the strongest back in the world, so it’s probably easier to spasm because of the issues he’s had. He wanted to be here, he feels terrible that he can’t.”

It now remains to be seen how long it is before Tiger is back in competition. He was out of action for 15 months after two procedures on the lower back in 2015, the longest injury layoff of his career. The comeback happened at an event he hosts --- the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas in December.

First Published: Feb 03, 2017 15:04 IST