(Reuters) - Jim Furyk’s hopes of competing in this year’s Masters were dealt a major blow on Monday with the news he needs surgery to resolve an ongoing wrist injury and is expected to be sidelined for another three months, his management company said.
A 17-times winner on the PGA Tour, American Furyk has not competed since he was forced to withdraw after just six holes at the BMW Championship last September due to a bone contusion in his left wrist.
In a bid to regain full health, he also pulled out of the season-ending Tour Championship the following week, as well as the Presidents Cup team competition in South Korea in October, but he has since been advised to have surgery.
“He is expected to be out for three months but we’ll know more on timeline (for Furyk’s absence) in the next two-six weeks,” his manager, Andrew Witlieb of The Legacy Agency, told Reuters.
“I would just say all looks good for a successful and swift recovery.”
Furyk, the world number nine, had not pulled out of a PGA Tour event in 20 years, a span of 477 straight events dating back to the 1995 Western Open, until his early withdrawal from the 2015 BMW Championship.
Should he remain on the sidelines for another three months, the 45-year-old would miss the season’s opening major, the April 7-10 Masters at Augusta National, and hope to be back in action some time in May.
“While I am disappointed that the wrist has not yet healed sufficiently for me to return to play, I am confident surgery at this point is the best course of action, and will get me back in the shortest possible time,” Furyk said in a statement.
“This has been frustrating for me to this point, but I am focusing on an aggressive rehabilitation program and having a strong year once I am sufficiently healed.”
The injury also hurts Furyk’s chances of making the American team for September’s Ryder Cup.
The 2003 U.S. Open champion has played in nine consecutive Ryder Cups stretching back to his debut in 1997.
Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Andrew Both