Chief Executive of The R&A, Peter Dawson has wished Tiger Woods all the best for his rehabilitation, after the three-time Open Champion announced that he will not be able to contest this year’s Open Championship. Woods is still suffering from knee and achilles problems, which have not recovered in time for him to take his place at golf’s oldest Major.
Dawson said: “I know how disappointed Tiger is not to be able to play in The Open this year. Naturally, we are sorry that a player of his calibre isn’t able to join us at Royal St George’s, but we wish him well in his recovery and hope to see him back soon, competing in front of the fans that love to see him play the game.”
Woods said earlier in a statement, “Unfortunately, I’ve been advised that I should not play in the British Open. As I stated at the AT&T National, I am only going to come back when I’m 100 percent ready. I do not want to risk further injury. That’s different for me, but I’m being smarter this time. I’m very disappointed and want to express my regrets to the British Open fans”.
Woods will be replaced by the USA’s Jason Dufner, who made his Open Championship debut at St Andrews last year, before finishing tied-fifth in the PGA Championship, at Whistling Straits.
This follows a weekend in which another four players secured their places at The Open Championship. Denmark’s Thorbjorn Oleson and Charles Howell III of the USA earned exemptions by virtue of their performances at the Open de France and the AT&T National, respectively. Swede Fredrik Jacobson and the USA’s Harrison Frazar did the same, after finishing as the leading players, not already exempt, in a PGA Tour mini-money list.
Americans Webb Simpson, JB Holmes and Steve Marino, along with Fiji’s Vijay Singh and Yuta Ikeda of Japan were promoted from the reserve list, bringing the current field to 154 players, with the two last places available at the John Deere Classic and the Scottish Open.
Brendan Jones of Australia, who was the first reserve, will not be able to accept his exemption, as his wife is expecting their baby. The next three players on the reserve list, as of now, are as follows:
1. Robert Garrigus
2. Anthony Kim
3. Simon Dyson