FORT WORTH, Texas – The Memorial Tournament will welcome an elite field next week in Dublin, Ohio, but it won’t host the competitive return of a certain five-time champ.
Tiger Woods was not listed among the 120-man field for next week’s event when it was released by the PGA Tour Friday afternoon. Woods has been a dominant force at Muirfield Village Golf Club over the last two decades, winning the tournament five times from 1999-2012.
By letting the entry deadline pass, Woods has opted to skip one of his favorite events as he continues to recover from multiple back procedures performed last fall.
Woods hasn’t played since a T-10 finish at the Wyndham Championship in August. Both he and agent Mark Steinberg have repeatedly noted that there is no timetable for Woods’ return to competition, but many theorized that the Memorial would be a logical warm-up event if Woods has intentions to play in the U.S. Open two weeks later.
Woods registered for the season’s second major in April, but that was seen as more of a procedural move to keep open the option of playing than a formal commitment to Oakmont.
Woods appeared to be making progress with recent public appearances at Sage Valley and Bluejack National, but his last outing went awry when he hit three straight balls into the water with a wedge during Quicken Loans National media day on May 16.
Even with the absence of Woods, there will be plenty of headliners next week in Ohio. The tournament boasts each of the top five players in the world, including No. 1 Jason Day and No. 3 Rory McIlroy, each making their first starts since wins at The Players Championship and Irish Open, respectively.