Rory McIlroy is scheduled to undergo an MRI scan Monday on his injured back.
McIlroy tweaked his upper back before the second round of the South African Open and said that he nearly withdrew from the tournament. He received treatment before and after each of the next three rounds, and he lost Sunday in a three-hole playoff to Graeme Storm.
McIlroy is in the field for next week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and hopes to play. The world No. 2 told reporters Sunday that the MRI is precautionary, to “see what’s up with this joint in my back.” The injury may have been caused, McIlroy said, by muscle fatigue, after testing equipment during the offseason.
“It was manageable this week with tape and a few pills so I am fine," he said, "but first and foremost I have to get fully fit and healthy again and hopefully I’ll be all right to play next week.
“We will see what happens. … It’s not 100 percent. Part of me really wants to make next week because there is so much to play for, but at the same time there is so much to play for over the whole season and I don’t want to jeopardize long-term goals for short-term gain, but hopefully I’ll be good to go.”