Jason Day’s return to some semblance of his world No. 1 form has been stalled by a back injury that forced him to pull out of the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Florida today.
The Australian withdrew after six holes of the first round.
Later, he said that he practised at TPC Sawgrass last week, but aggravated an old injury.
“(I) then got an MRI Monday, which came back that I had an annular tear in my disc, and then I've got facet problems as well,’’ he said. “My back was sore when I was practising from Tuesday to Saturday, and I was going to practice on Sunday, but I woke up and couldn't really walk or sit in the car.
“I was on a dose pack to try get the inflammation out of it, and that didn’t get any better. I saw a physio here (in Orlando) and tried to do as much work as I possibly could to get ready for this week. I couldn’t play at 100 percent today, so I just wanted to see if I could get out here and (my back) may have loosened up. But, unfortunately, it didn’t, so I had to pull out."
The injury is ill-timed with the Players coming up soon and only a few weeks to the Masters, not to mention that Day is expected to lead the International team at the Presidents Cup in Melbourne later this year.
The Queenslander’s career has been blighted by injury and illness including a bad hand injury and a bout of vertigo in 2018. He won his only major championship, the US PGA, in 2015, and was world No. 1 on three separate occasions in 2015-2016. His current ranking is No. x and his last victory was early in 2018.