The key number is 8. That’s how many majors Tiger Woods will have missed after this year’s U.S. Open at Oakmont Country Club in Pittsburgh.
Woods will not play in next week’s U.S. Open, marking the third time in the past six years he will miss the major championship he has won three times.
“While I continue to work hard on getting healthy, I’m not physically ready to play in this year’s U.S. Open and the Quicken Loans National,” Woods said in a statement. “I am making progress, but I’m not yet ready for tournament competition.”
He also announced that he won’t be playing the following in the Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club. It benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation and was one that seemed a sensible fit for his long-awaited comeback.
Woods, 40, is recovering from two back surgeries performed last fall, the second apparently more serious than the first. It has been more than seven months since the last surgery on Oct. 28; he last competed in August at the Wyndham Championship, where the 14-time major winner tied for 10th.
Now it is unclear when Woods will return, or if he will at all during this PGA Tour season. The Open at Royal Troon next month and the PGA Championship at Baltusrol at the end of July are possibilities but seem unlikely if he doesn’t get some tournament preparation.
Woods has 79 PGA Tour titles, and some major magazine articles have speculated that he may never play again.