When we see Tiger Woods play golf next, he’ll be 40 years old.
Woods announced Friday that he will be out until “early 2016” after he underwent a second microdiscectomy procedure on his back. The surgery, done in Utah on Sept. 16 by Dr. Charles Rich, comes just 18 months after Woods had a similar procedure performed on March 31, 2014.
“With the upcoming offseason, the decision was made to remove a small disc fragment that was pinching his nerve,” said Dr. Rich. “The microsurgery was a complete success, and he was discharged Thursday night.”
Woods finished tied for 10th at the Wyndham Championship in August as part of a last-ditch effort to qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs, but came up short of a necessary top-two finish, missing the PGA Tour’s postseason for the third time in the last five seasons. During the Wyndham, Woods said he felt discomfort in his hip and back. The pain continued, and upon examination, the discomfort was pinpointed to his back. Woods elected to have surgery.
The former world No. 1 said he expects to come back after taking the appropriate time to recover.
“This is certainly disappointing, but I’m a fighter,” Woods said. “I’ve been told I can make a full recovery, and I have no doubt that I will.”
After his first microdiscectomy, the 39-year-old returned to the PGA Tour at the 2014 Quicken Loans National, which benefits his foundation. Woods admitted at the time that he would not have come back as soon were it not for the politics of placating a new tournament sponsor and 2014 host Congressional Country Club.
The 14-time major champion had committed to play in the Frys.com Open, the PGA Tour’s 2015-16 season opener, as well the Americas Golf Cup on PGA Tour Latinoamerica in October.
“I’d like to send my regrets to Frys and all those associated with the Americas Golf Cup,” Woods was quoted as saying on his website. “Those were two events I was really looking forward to playing.”
He will attend his Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas in December but will not play.