The 2014 Masters Tournament will be great, as it always is, but it will be missing something this year. Tiger Woods announced Tuesday morning he will not play in golf’s biggest annual event because of a pinched nerve that has been causing pain in his back for the past several weeks. Without the most famous golfer of all time playing, the victory just won’t mean as much for the winner, regardless of Tiger’s condition.
The back problems caused Woods to withdraw from the 2014 Honda Classic this year and then ailed him tremendously during the WGC-Cadillac Championship before he skipped the Arnold Palmer Invitational altogether. All of this was done so that he could be in the best physical condition possible for the Masters, but now the cautious tuning up has cost Woods dearly.
Considering he still needs to win four majors to catch Jack Nicklaus on the all-time list and he hasn’t won a major since the 2008 U.S. Open, missing one of four opportunities that come about each year is the absolute worst thing that could possibly happen to Woods.
It’s tough to blame someone for an injury situation, but Woods shouldn’t have played in the WGC-Cadillac Championship after all the trouble he had in the Honda Classic. It seems the unrealistic mental toughness he once showed on the course is fading with age and although he’s only 38, an injury like this six years after his last major win is an extremely bad sign for the man many expected to catch Nicklaus with ease.
Tiger not playing in the Masters is bad news for everyone because the players want him there to make the victory sweeter and the fans definitely want him there because he carries the popularity of the sport on the larger scale. Here’s to hopping he’s well again soon for the good of the game.