J.B. Holmes is making his first start in eight months about, oh, 7,500 miles from home.
The long-hitting Holmes returned to action Thursday at the Dunlop Phoenix, which is being played in Miyazaki, Japan. He opened with 8-over 79 and is T-80 in the 84-man field.
Holmes hasn’t played since the Honda Classic in March. Soon after, he fractured his left ankle in a rollerblading accident near his Windermere, Fla., home.
The former Ryder Cupper was originally expected to miss between 8-12 weeks, but he tweeted in July that he was out for the season and wanted to “make sure I am 100% before I get back out there.”
In fall 2011, Holmes underwent brain surgery to clear up a condition called Chiari malformation. After returning to the Tour in 2012, he finished 80th in earnings and had eight top 25s.
Earlier this year, Holmes had four missed cuts and a T-50.
When he returns in ’14, Holmes will have 19 starts remaining on a major medical extension. He will need to earn $580,299 or 352 FedEx Cup points to retain his status.