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Will Zalatoris Withdraws from BMW Championship with Back Injury Amid FedEx Cup Chase

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVAugust 20, 2022

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Fresh off winning last week's St. Jude Championship, Will Zalatoris withdrew from the BMW Championship on Saturday.

The PGA Tour's official Twitter account tweeted a video of Zalatoris attempting to work out a back issue before ultimately withdrawing because of the injury:

PGA TOUR @PGATOUR

Will Zalatoris has withdrawn in the third round <a href="https://twitter.com/BMWchamps?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@BMWChamps</a> with a back injury. <a href="https://t.co/mwV9SC06SF">pic.twitter.com/mwV9SC06SF</a>

Entering Saturday's third round, Zalatoris was three-under for the tournament thanks to a one-under 70 in the first round and two-under 69 in the second round. He was just four holes into the third round when he withdrew, and was one-under for the day.

Zalatoris is the current leader in the FedExCup standings with 3,680 points, placing him ahead of Scottie Scheffler and his 3,556 points in second place.

Zalatoris' manager, Allen Hobbs, released a statement Saturday saying Zalatoris tweaked his lower back and decided to withdraw when the pain didn't subside:

Will Gray @WillGrayGC

Agent statement from Zalatoris following mid-round WD. Still plans to play next week in Atlanta. <a href="https://t.co/LX2CIGm96S">pic.twitter.com/LX2CIGm96S</a>

Hobbs also noted that Zalatoris plans to work with his trainers in order to be ready to play in next week's Tour Championship in Atlanta.

Last week marked Zalatoris' first win of the season and the first win of his PGA Tour career. He scored the victory by beating Sepp Straka in a playoff, which was significant since he previously lost the Farmers Insurance Open and PGA Championship in playoffs this season.

The 26-year-old is one of the fastest-rising stars in golf, as he has nine top-10 finishes this season and is ranked ninth in the world golf rankings.

Even if Zalatoris is able to play next week, he may be playing catch-up while trying to chase down Scheffler in the FedExCup.

Both Zalatoris and Scheffler are more than 1,000 points clear of third-place Cameron Smith, so while Zalatoris does have some cushion, Scheffler was tied for third in the BMW Championship, just two shots behind the leader at the time of Zalatoris withdrawal.

Scheffler has picked up the first four PGA Tour wins of his career this season, including the Masters, and may now be the golfer to beat in the FedExCup.

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