Tiger Woods Continues 3rd Year of Back Pain Struggle

There seems to be no end point for Tiger Woods in his battle against his back muscles.

Tiger Woods’ back problems became public knowledge on March 2, 2014.  On this day, the final round of the 2014 Honda Classic, Tiger Woods withdrew from the tournament after shooting a five-over-par 40 on the front nine.

At the time, Woods cited back spasms as his reason for withdrawing. It has been almost three years since that day and Woods’ has had multiple surgeries since, but Woods is still struggling to stay in contention on tour.

Tiger’s 1st Back Surgery – 2014

Woods underwent his first back surgery a few weeks after the Honda Classic on March 31, 2014. For the first time in his career, Woods told his fans on his website that he would not play in the year’s first major, the 2014 Masters. He did indicate to his fans that he may well try to be back in time for the Quicken Loans National tournament held in June. But, as June came around, at a press conference at the tournament site, Woods told reporters that he would need more time to heal.

Consequently, Woods withdrew from events on his summer schedule as well as the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in August of 2014. The woes for Tiger continued well into 2015 as Woods withdrew from the Farmers Insurance Open, his second tournament of the year just 11 holes into his first round. Again, he told reporters that he had back issues and said that the fog delays bothered his back.

Tiger’s 2nd Back Surgery – 2015

He finished his 2015 season at the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, North Carolina. He went on to finish at 13-under par finishing in a tie for 10th place. A couple of days into his offseason he had a second surgery to help relieve his back pain. He cancelled appearances at the Hero World Challenge tournament that was set to take place in December of 2015. At the time, Woods announced to his fans via his website that he hoped to be back in 2016.

2016 started and anxious Tiger fans waited. Tiger announced on his website in early April that he would miss the Masters again. Woods’ also sent this tweet out to let his fans and followers his reason for not competing.

On many of Woods’ social media accounts, he did post a lot of positive messages about how he was progressing well. He posted videos of himself hitting balls in an indoor driving range.

2016: Tiger Fans Have Reason to Hope

There was hope for Tiger Woods when he committed to playing in the Safeway Open this past October, but three days before the tournament, he withdrew, casting another shadow of doubt on his return to competitive golf. Along with his withdrawal from the Safeway tournament, Woods also announced late last year that he would not compete in the Turkish Airlines Open which effectively ended his 2016 season. Woods promised fans that he would be back and healthy in 2017.

The start to Tiger’s 2017 season began at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego, California. Woods had won the tournament seven times but failed to make the cut after shooting a four-over-par 148.  He told reporters from SBNation.com, “it’s frustrating not having a chance to win this tournament.”

The following week, Woods again withdrew from the Dubai Desert Classic after shooting a five-over-par 77 in the first round. Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg told reporters from the New York Times that “Tiger Woods went into a spasm in his lower back fairly late last night.”

Two weeks later, Tiger Woods announced that he will not play in his next two scheduled events, the Genesis Open and the Honda Classic.

Woods told USA Today’s Steve DiMeglio that “My doctors have advised me not to play the next two weeks, to continue my treatment and to let my back calm down.”

Tiger has told reporters throughout the last two weeks that his focus in more towards the first major of the year, the Masters. After starting the year with a missed cut and three tournament withdrawals, Tiger Woods’ comeback to golf’s highest stage is in the limbo.

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