Will Zalatoris withdrew from the 149th Open Championship on Friday, citing a back injury suffered as he came out of a big rough at the end of his first-round 69.
Zalatoris was having a terrific season in the majors. He finished second at the Masters in April, slotted No. 30 in the Official World Golf Ranking, tied for sixth at the recent U.S. Open, and tied for eighth at the PGA Championship in May, and at Royal St. George’s he was five shots off the lead but on Friday morning he had to pull the plugin a social media statement, he said: “I am beyond disappointed with myself”. The second shot from the big rough on No.15 yesterday sent a tingling sensation in my left leg and I was advised not to risk further back damage. ”
Zalatoris, 24, after finishing second at the Masters in April and T8 at the PGA Championship in May was making his first Open start. He missed the cut at the US Open and had just finished 77th at the Rocket Mortgage Classic.
Round at Royal St. George’s
He had had a pretty solid first round at Royal St. George’s, although he only hit half of the fairways – the pitch averaged 56.78 percent. He beat the Eagle at the 12th short par 4 holes. After doubling in pain after his second shot at 15, recovered par. He birdied at 16.
He said he considered not finishing after the injury but decided to hold on as it was his first competitive round in an open championship, “although that meant embarrassing me a bit in the end.
On Friday, Zalatoris added, he tried hitting balls and training in the gym, to no avail.
“ I can’t believe I lost the chance to advance in the championship, I’m truly disgusted with myself,” he added. “I can’t wait to come back as soon as possible… thank you all for your support. “