Stadler (hand) unable to defend WMPO title

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The Waste Management Phoenix Open released its official field Friday night, with one notable omission: defending champion Kevin Stadler.

Stadler will not defend his lone PGA Tour title at next week's event, as a stress fracture in his right hand continues to sideline him. The 34-year-old withdrew after just two holes during the WGC-HSBC Champions in November, and his comeback attempt lasted only two rounds at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions earlier this month, where he again withdrew before the third round.

Stadler's return to action now remains in doubt. He had a career year in 2014, a season that included his first trip to the Masters. Stadler tied for eighth at Augusta National last year, and as a result he will be invited back this spring if he is healthy enough to play.

Last year, Stadler beat Bubba Watson and Graham DeLaet by one shot at TPC Scottsdale to record his maiden win. This will mark the second time this season that a player has not defended a title on the PGA Tour, as Dustin Johnson missed the WGC-HSBC Champions in China while on a leave of absence.