THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Steve Stricker remains confident he can avoid surgery to repair an ailing disk in his neck but said on Thursday at the Chevron World Challenge that he is still not 100 percent.
Stricker, who withdrew from this year’s BMW Championship because of the injury, has been using two devices to alleviate the pressure in his neck, one he traveled with to the Presidents Cup and another from therapist Greg Rose, and has been undergoing therapy twice a day at the Chevron.
“It’s actually feeling a lot better,” Stricker said. “I’ve been on a six-, eight-week program. I’ve been doing a lot of traction since Day 1.”
Although he said surgery is still an option, Stricker’s plan is to spend the next few weeks playing and preparing for 2012 and trying to strengthen his left arm, which he began feeling weakness in last December while bow hunting deer back home in Wisconsin.
“I’m playing hard these next couple of weeks, practicing hard trying to get ready for Hawaii and see how it takes me up to that point,” he said. “If I have to (have surgery) then I have to do it. Hopefully what I’m doing is going to keep that surgery away.”
The ailment didn’t seem to slow Stricker on Thursday at Sherwood Country Club. He’s tied with host Tiger Woods for second place following an opening 69, three strokes behind K.J. Choi.