Will Zalatoris Becomes Second Player To Withdraw From 2023 Masters
The 26-year-old was forced to pull out of the 87th Masters on day one through injury
Will Zalatoris has withdrawn from the 87th Masters due to injury, minutes before he was due to tee off at Augusta National.
The 26-year-old was scheduled to get going at 1.24pm local time (6.24pm BST) alongside Matthew Fitzpatrick and Collin Morikawa as part of a star-studded afternoon three-ball. The news was initially reported by TSN's Bob Weeks before being confirmed via official Masters channels.
Due to injury, @WillZalatoris has officially withdrawn from the Masters Tournament prior to starting his first round. #themastersApril 6, 2023
The specifics remain unknown, but Zalatoris has previous with injury, having missed the end of 2022 after suffering two herniated disks during last year's BMW Championship. Ahead of the first men's Major of the year, he spoke about the root cause of his issues and the adjustments he's had to make.
"The genesis of it was actually bad right ankle mobility," Zalatoris said. "Because of me not pushing off my right side soon enough and being a very kind of dynamic player with some side bend, my right hip got high and tilted back.
"We've been trying to get me actually to stand closer to the golf ball, so that makes me create space with the ball so I can turn more horizontal as opposed to lateral. It's been good. It's taken its sweet time to get the full swing to come back, but I think really the last couple weeks we finally have seen some progress.
"Actually, my back doctor texted me this morning and he said, 'Hey, enjoy this week because this was the goal of coming back was to be back here, and you've played seven events. You're way ahead of schedule'.
"Results regardless, if you asked me in October, this was probably 50-50 me playing here, and the fact I played seven events showed that I did the right things. I've had no pain over the last month."
In that vein, Zalatoris was full of optimism ahead of his third Masters appearance, having finished second on debut in 2021 and tied for sixth last year. Now, however, he joins Kevin Na, who withdrew after nine holes through illness, leaving playing partner Mike Weir to complete the back nine on his own.
A lifelong golf fan, Andy graduated in 2019 with a degree in Sports Journalism and got his first role in the industry as the Instruction Editor for National Club Golfer. From there, he went on to enjoy a spell freelancing for Stats Perform producing football reports, and then for RacingNews365 covering Formula 1. However, he couldn't turn down the opportunity to get back into the sport he grew up watching and playing and now covers a mixture of equipment, instruction and news for Golf Monthly's website and print title.
Andy took up the game at the age of seven and even harboured ambitions of a career in the professional ranks for a spell. That didn’t pan out, but he still enjoys his weekend golf at Royal Troon and holds a scratch handicap. As a side note, he's made five holes-in-one and could quite possibly be Retief Goosen’s biggest fan.
As well as the above, some of Andy's work has featured on websites such as goal.com, dailyrecord.co.uk, and theopen.com.
What's in Andy's bag?
Driver: Callaway Mavrik Sub-Zero (9°)
3-wood: TaylorMade Stealth 2 Plus (15°)
Driving iron: Titleist U500 (17°)
Irons: Callaway Apex Pro '19 (4-PW)
Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM9 (50°, 54° and 58°)
Putter: TaylorMade Spider X
Ball: TaylorMade TP5x
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