Tiger Woods announced Wednesday night on his website that he will not seek a spot on the U.S. Ryder Cup team because he needs time to rest and rehabilitate his injured back.
"I've been told by my doctors and trainer that my back muscles need to be rehabilitated and healed," he said in a statement on tigerwoods.com. "They've advised me not to play or practice now. I was fortunate that my recent back injury was not related to my surgery and was muscular only."
Woods, who did not qualify for one of the nine U.S. Ryder Cup spots based on points accrued during play, won't play in any more PGA Tour events this year and said he'll aim to return to competitive golf during his annual World Challenge event Dec. 4-7 in Orlando, Florida.
Woods' statement said that he already discussed the situation with U.S. Ryder Cup captain Tom Watson, who earlier this week said a final decision on using one of the three captain's picks to place Woods on the team would depend on how Woods felt about his health and game.
"I have already spoken to Tom about the Ryder Cup, and while I greatly appreciate his thinking about me for a possible captain's pick, I took myself out of consideration," Woods' statement said. "The U.S. team and the Ryder Cup mean too much to me not to be able to give it my best. I'll be cheering for the U.S. team. I think we have an outstanding squad going into the matches."
Woods, who had back surgery in March to relieve pressure from a pinched nerve and missed the Masters and U.S. Open, did not make the cut at the PGA Championship last week at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky. He withdrew from the Bridgestone Invitational two weeks ago because of back spasms after an awkward shot in the final round.
The U.S. vs. Europe Ryder Cup is Sept. 26-28 at Gleneagles, Scotland.
"My primary wish is for Tiger to be healthy and competitive, and I hope that he'll return to the game very soon," Watson said in a statement released by the PGA of America. "Of course, I'm disappointed that Tiger Woods has asked not to be considered for the U.S. Ryder Cup team, and that his health is not where he would like it to be. However, we can all agree that we need Tiger Woods in this great sport, and he has taken the high road by informing me early on in the selection process."
"Everybody is playing for something this week," two-time winner Davis Love III said. "Guys that are here are here for a lot of different."
The FedEx Cup playoffs begin next week at The Barclays in New Jersey. If the season ended now, No. 125 Paul Casey would hold the final postseason spot.
Next year's event will be called the Women's PGA Championship. It will be the first women's major run by the PGA of America and will be staged at Westchester Country Club in the suburbs of New York City. It will be televised on NBC during the weekend, only the second event on the schedule on network TV.
The tour had events at Locust Hill for 37 years, but the final LPGA Championship starts Thursday at nearby Monroe Golf Club. The plan then is to move it around the nation, with most of the events in the New York City area. "The ball's in our ballpark," LPGA Tour commissioner Michael Whan said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.