Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood enters rehab

Wed Jul 16, 2008 12:55pm EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood has entered rehab for a drinking problem, his spokeswoman said on Wednesday.

"Following Ronnie's continued battle with alcohol he has entered a period of rehab," Wood's spokeswoman said in London. "His close family and friends say he is seeking help and look forward to his recovery."

The announcement followed a series of British newspaper reports that Wood, 61, had been spending time at his Irish retreat with a young Russian cocktail waitress.

They added that the relationship had threatened his 23-year-old marriage to wife Jo.

Wood, who has had a history of substance abuse, told Reuters in an interview last year that his wife and Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger had persuaded him to enter rehab before the band's 2002 tour.

Before then, it was fellow guitarist Keith Richards who tried to help him sober up, he said, sometimes drawing a knife or wielding a pistol in the process.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White; editing by Andrew Dobbie)

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<p>Ronnie Wood, member of The Rolling Stones, attends a book signing for his autobiography, 'Ronnie', in central London, October 16, 2007. REUTERS/Toby Melville</p>