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Masters 2012: Injury Forces Dustin Johnson to Withdraw from Field

MIAMI, FL - MARCH 09:  Dustin Johnson watches his tee shot on the 11th hole during the second round of the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship on the TPC Blue Monster at Doral Golf Resort And Spa on March 9, 2012 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
David Cannon/Getty Images
Eric BallFeatured ColumnistApril 3, 2012

The Masters is going to be missing one of its biggest stars at the premiere event of the season.

Dustin Johnson, currently the 12th ranked player in the world, is going to skip the Masters with a tweaked back according to his Twitter account:

First I have to apologize to the fans and sponsors. With heartfelt regret, I won't be playing in the Masters due to a tweaked back. #imsorry

— Dustin Johnson (@DJohnsonPGA) April 3, 2012

You have no idea how much I wanted to walk the fairways at Augusta and fulfill what I've been practicing for!! I'll have to root my buddies!

— Dustin Johnson (@DJohnsonPGA) April 3, 2012

It’s a tough pill to swallow for Johnson, who was thought to be one of the favorites to make a run because of his driving distance, which is particularly helpful at a course like Augusta National.

According to Golf.com, Johnson had 35/1 odds to take home the green jacket, placing him 11th overall. Tiger Woods is first at 4/1, Rory McIlroy is second at 5/1 and Phil Mickelson rounds out the top three at 13/1.

Johnson, who has five PGA Tour wins, had offseason knee surgery in November and has had a rather sluggish start to 2012, aside from a fourth place finish in mid-February at the Northern Trust Open.

MIAMI, FL - MARCH 08:  Dustin Johnson watches his tee shot on the 15th hole during first round of the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship on the TPC Blue Monster at Doral Golf Resort And Spa on March 8, 2012 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Scott
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

The last official tournament Johnson participated was in the second week of March at the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral. He finished tied for 35th.

This was going to be Johnson’s fourth career appearance at the Masters after finishing tied for 30th in 2009 and tied for 38th in 2010 and 2011. This was supposed to be the year he took the next step and finished in the upper tier of the most prestigious event of the tour season. Instead, he’s forced to wait yet another year.

With today’s announcement, the Masters field has now been reduced to 96 players. 

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