There will be no three-peat in the desert.
Hideki Matsuyama withdrew before the second round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open. According to the 25-year-old star, a left wrist injury is to blame.
“The pain in my left thumb area started on 13th hole yesterday,” Matsuyama told Japanese reporters. “I did some treatment last night, but the pain was still there this morning when I practised. I decided that it was not worth forcing myself to continue to play and worsen the injury, so I was disappointed that I had to withdraw.
“As much as I wanted to continue to play and with the three-peat in mind, the pain was just too much.”
After a rough end to his 2017 season, Matsuyama had slowly turned things around in the new campaign, turning in a T-5 at the CIMB Classic, a T-4 at the Tournament of Champions and T-12 at last week’s Farmers Insurance Open. Moreover, while the courses on the early slate are hardly taxing, Matsuyama’s short game had shown signs of life (31st in sg: putting), a sharp contrast from last year’s putrid performance (173rd in sg: putting).
The WD is especially painful give Matsuyama’s success at TPC Scottsdale. Not only did he enter as the two-time defending champ, Matsuyama finished T-2 in 2015.
It is the first time Matsuyama has pulled out of a tournament since the 2016 Honda Classic (hip).