PARK CITY, Utah (CBS SF) — Tiger Woods, the world’s No. 1 ranked golfer, has pulled out of the Masters tournament with back injury that has required surgery.

Woods tweeted the announcement to his followers Tuesday morning, a day after he underwent surgery in Park City, Utah for a pinched nerve that has been affecting him for months.

The back injury could be career-threatening, according to former pro Paul Azinger

Woods’ absence from Augusta will mark the first time in 20 years that Woods will not play in the event.

In a statement on his website, Woods said:

“After attempting to get ready for the Masters, and failing to make the necessary progress, I decided, in consultation with my doctors, to have this procedure done,” the 38-year-old Woods said in the statement.

“I’d like to express my disappointment to the Augusta National membership, staff, volunteers and patrons that I will not be at the Masters. It’s a week that’s very special to me. It also looks like I’ll be forced to miss several upcoming tournaments to focus on my rehabilitation and getting healthy.”

Woods will begin rehabilitation within one week and could begin chipping and putting within three weeks, according to his website, with a goal of resuming play during the summer.

The Masters begins April 10.


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