Tiger says he would have not been ready to play

Tiger Woods says it would not have been fair to his team-mates had he been picked for the American Ryder Cup team.

The 14-time major champion ended speculation about his selection for next month’s event at Gleneagles by withdrawing himself from consideration to fully recover from a troublesome back injury.

Woods has struggled to regain both form and fitness since returning to action following almost four months out after back surgery in March. He withdrew from the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in March after suffering back spasms, and he continued to look in pain as he missed the cut by a distance at the recent PGA Championship.

Explaining his decision to withdraw, Woods said: “Physically I just couldn’t do it – I wouldn’t be ready and not being ready for my team-mates, for the captain, assistant captains and everyone who’s involved in the event, I just wouldn’t be ready and I just couldn’t help the team.

“Everytime your name’s called – and when you’re on that team your name could be called five times and trust me, I’ve played all five sessions, some guys have played one – but when your name’s called, your name’s called and you need to be able to go out there and get a point.

“And I just didn’t feel like I could be ready enough where I could get a point and with that being said, it was time to shut it down, get stronger and get more explosive again and get back for next year.”

Getting stronger

Woods is targeting a return at his event in December and he is focused on getting stronger day by day.

He said: “It’s a little bit right now but generally it’s getting better, there’s no doubt. We’ve got it all calmed down, now it’s about the strengthening up process.

“And I probably won’t be swinging a club for another month but just getting stronger each and every day.

“I’m in the gym two or three times a day. I’ve got my physios, I’ve got my trainers there, so we’re working hard and then we’re going to introduce dynamic training again, my explosiveness, but that’s down the road, let’s just get this thing stronger first.

He added: “I’ve got basically three-and-a-half, four months off where I get to be physically fit, when I come back I’ll be explosive again and stable.”