Tiger to return at Memorial

Updated: June 1, 2010, 2:45 AM ET
By Jason Sobel | ESPN.com

Tiger Woods will return to competition from a recent neck injury at next week's Memorial Tournament.

In his last competitive appearance, Woods withdrew on the seventh hole of the final round of the Players Championship on May 9 due to an injury that was later found to be an inflamed facet joint in his neck.

"The doctors advised me to take a week off and rest, which I did," Woods said on his website. "They prescribed physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medication and soft-tissue massages, which I'm continuing with. Although I'm not 100 percent, I feel much better and look forward to competing next week."

According to the Golf Channel report, Woods will also take part in a nine-hole Wednesday skins match at Muirfield Village that will include Phil Mickelson, Steve Stricker, Rory McIlroy, Kenny Perry, Sean O'Hair, Zach Johnson and tournament host Jack Nicklaus.

Woods is the defending champion at the Memorial, earning his fourth career title at the event last year when he posted scores of 69-74-68-65 to defeat Jim Furyk by a single stroke.

In three starts this season following a highly publicized personal scandal, Woods has seen mixed results. He finished in a tie for fourth place at the Masters, but missed the cut at the Quail Hollow Championship one week prior to withdrawing from the Players.

The original prognosis for his injury was a full recovery, with physical therapy, massage, rest and anti-inflammatory medicine being used to treat the problematic area.

"I want to thank everyone for their caring and concern," Woods said via his Website on May 12. "I now need to take care of this condition and will return to playing golf when I'm physically able."

The tournament hosted by Jack Nicklaus will also serve as preparation for the U.S. Open two weeks later at Pebble Beach.

Woods has since confirmed he will play in the British Open at St. Andrews from July 15-18. He has yet to commit to any tournament beyond the Memorial, the next two major championships and the AT&T National, from July 1-4 at Aronimink Golf Club.

Jason Sobel is a golf writer for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Jason Sobel | email

Golf Editor, ESPN.com
Jason Sobel, who joined ESPN in 1997, earned four Sports Emmy awards as a member of ESPN's Studio Production department. He became ESPN.com's golf editor in July 2004.

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