Former Open champion Darren Clarke has pulled out of the Masters with a hamstring injury, the Northern Irishman has confirmed.

Clarke had withdrawn from last week's Valero Open in Texas after suffering the injury while on holiday in the Bahamas.

But the sustained rest hasn't sparked an improvement in his physical state and Clarke, who has gone five years without making the cut at Augusta, his 22nd place finish in 2006 his last, is not targeting a return in the Ballantine's Championship.

Darren Clarke
Clarke's hamstring injury keeps him out of The Masters.

"It is with deep regret that I will not be able to play at Augusta this year," said Clarke. "Playing in The Masters is one of golf's greatest pleasures and I am very disappointed to be missing out."

"It was just one of those freak injuries which is really disappointing," he added. "I have done absolutely everything to be at Augusta: physio, ultrasound and icing, but I cannot physically turn through shots and there is no point in going to the Masters if you are not 100 per cent fit.

"Understandably, I am absolutely gutted but I hope to be fit enough to be back for the Ballantine's Championship on the European Tour in a couple of weeks' time."

With replacements not permitted at the The Masters, Clarke absence reduces the field to 93 as Marcel Siem, the only member of the current top 50 not to qualify, continues to miss out.

The 44 year old claimed his only major title at Royal St George's in 2011, finishing three shots ahead of Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson but has made the cut just once at a major championship since then, at last year's PGA Championship and is without a win since.