Tiger Woods has confirmed his withdrawal from next month's US Open at Pinehurst as the current world No.3 continues to recover from surgery on a pinched nerve in his back.
Woods, a winner of the tournament in 2000, 2002 and 2008, missed the Masters at Augusta in April after going under the knife in March and hasn't played since the Cadillac Championship.
The 38 year old's absence, which has already seen him usurped as world No.1 by Adam Scott, is another blow Woods' hopes of overcoming Jack Nicklaus' major record of 18 but the American is hopeful of returning to golf later in 2014.
"Unfortunately, I won't be there because I'm not yet physically able to play competitive golf," Woods told his official website. "I'd like to convey my regrets to the USGA leadership, the volunteers and the fans that I won't be at Pinehurst.
"The U.S. Open is very important to me, and I know it's going to be a great week. Despite missing the first two majors, and several other important tournaments, I remain very optimistic about this year and my future."
The 14-time major winner will hope to make a recovery in time for The Open Championship at Royal Liverpool in July or the USPGA Championship at Valhalla in August.
Woods will also have designs on featuring in an eighth Ryder Cup though his injury absence currently sees him outside automatic qualifying and requiring a wildcard from captain Tom Watson.
Injury naturally sees Woods also miss this weekend's Memorial Tournament – the Nicklaus-founded event and the golf legend is disappointed by his absence.
"It was a very, very nice call, wishing me well [with] the tournament, sorry he couldn't be here," Nicklaus said.
"He said he's doing well, progressing well, and he's looking forward to getting back into the game. He misses it."