Tiger Woods announced on Wednesday that he had undergone ankle surgery just two weeks after making the cut at the Masters but withdrawing before the final day.
Woods dropped the surprise news he had undergone a “successful” subtalar fusion surgery in New York City on Wednesday. “Tiger underwent a subtalar fusion procedure to address his post-traumatic athritis from his previous talus fracture,” the statement read.
The talus is the second-largest of a group of bones known as the tarsus, which forms the lower part of the ankle joint and transmits the weight of the body from the lower leg to the foot. The subtalar joint allows for side-to-side movement needed for walking, especially on uneven surfaces.
The surgery was done by Dr. Martin O’Malley. Woods’ team released a statement via social media:
“Tiger is currently recovering and looks forward to beginning his rehabilitation,” the statement read, although no date or target for a return was specified.
Recovery from the surgery has been described as requiring 8-12 weeks, and if the 47-year-old Woods needs the maximum period that takes him through mid July – right before the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool, which will be held July-20-23.
He would also have to undergo additional rehab on the ankle once the boot is off.
“He’s resting now and will start the recovery process,” Mark Steinberg, Woods’ agent at Excel Sports, said in an interview with the Associated Press’ Doug Ferguson Wednesday. “The first goal is to recover and lead a much more enjoyable day-to-day life.”
Woods, 47, has played only a five PGA Tour events since suffering serious injuries to his leg in a single-car accident in February 2021. He defied the odds to make the cut in four of those five, but he’s only completed two of those events. He withdrew from the 2022 PGA Championship and the 2023 Masters recently, when he appeared to aggravate the ankle injury during a severely weather-interrupted Masters. He withdrew midway through the third round.
Recently, Woods teed up in his Genesis Invitational in Los Angeles, a tournament he hosts for his TGR Foundation, and made the cut en route to a T45 finish.
Woods was expected to play in next month’s PGA Championship at Oak Hill in upstate New York.