Stenson hitting balls after surgery, eyes quick return


Henrik Stenson began hitting balls two days ago and is hoping to return to competition when the European Tour hits the Middle East, he said Friday on "Fairways of Life."

Stenson told host Matt Adams that he was back practicing following Dec. 9 surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee.

“We’re working on getting back into action. Started hitting balls two days ago," he said.

“Hopefully we’ll make a full recovery, but it’s been a little quirkier than the other one. I had my left one done in 2011 and I feel like this one has been bothering me a little bit more. I’ve done more rehab, but … I need another week or two (before competing), I’d say.”

Stenson revealed that he had a similar procedure done on his left knee in '11. After struggling through a practice round at Augusta National with Graeme McDowell and Ian Poulter, he sought an MRI which revealed a tear. He battled through the season and had surgery in December.

Stenson said the latest issue arose late last summer. He said the knee felt "unstable" and was "clicking" during the FedEx Cup playoffs, where he had three runner-up finishes in four starts. He added that he has been "protecting" the knee in his first range session post-surgery and that walking normally is still an issue. "There's a tiny bit of a limp still," he said. "It's a little bit of a grind."

Still, he anticipates a similar return as before, as he regularly begins his season at events in Abu Dhbai, Qatar and Dubai, which are played in a three-week stretch beginning Jan. 21.

“I played tournament golf six weeks after (the first surgery)," he said, "and this one, hopefully, I can do the same.”