Ailing Woods rules himself out of Ryder Cup
By Mark Lamport-Stokes
(Reuters) - Tiger Woods ruled himself out of contention for a wildcard spot on the U.S. Ryder Cup team due to lingering back problems on Wednesday and has been told by doctors not to play or practice until his condition improves, the former world number one said.
Woods, who had surgery in March to treat a pinched nerve and has played just eight tournaments this year, asked U.S. captain Tom Watson not to consider him for one of three wildcard picks for the biennial team competition against Europe next month.
Watson will announce his three picks on Sept. 2 to complete his 12-man team to take on holders Europe at Gleneagles in Scotland from Sept. 26-28.
"While I greatly appreciate Tom thinking about me for a possible captain's pick, I must take myself out of consideration," Woods said in a statement.
"I've been told by my doctors and trainer that my back muscles need to be rehabilitated and healed. They've advised me not to play or practise now. I'm extremely disappointed that I won't be ready for the competition.
"The U.S. team and the Ryder Cup mean too much to me not to be able to give it my best. I'll be cheering for the U.S. team. I think we have an outstanding squad going into the matches."
Woods, a 14-times major winner, said on his official website that he planned to return to competition for the Dec. 4-7 World Challenge tournament which he hosts, to be played this year in Orlando, Florida.
"It's an event that's important to me and my foundation, and it will be exciting to be playing again," he said. "I was fortunate that my recent back injury was not related to my surgery and was muscular only." Continued...