Jack Nicklaus is unhappy with the current trend of Tour pros withdrawing from tournaments because of injury, adding it didn’t happen when he played.
Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose and Paul Casey are all absent from the Memorial Tournament this week because of injury, an event Nicklaus birthed and still hosts.
"You think I had any injuries when I played? Do you think Arnold had any injuries when he played? Do you think Gary had any injuries when he played? How many tournaments do you think that we entered that we withdrew from during the course of our career?" Nicklaus said, signalling the answer was zero.
"Would they withdraw back 30 years ago? Probably not, because that wasn't the norm," Nicklaus said. "We played through it. We had a ton of injuries and I played through it. But that's sort of the norm today. And the guys … I made my own decisions. I didn't have an entourage. I didn't have a fitness trainer. I didn't have a nutritionist, whatever you all have, somebody to cut my toenails in the morning. I didn't have any of that. I did that myself.
"I think that entourage helps make that decision for the player, telling them, ‘We think physically this is probably not right for you to play.' And that's what their job is," Nicklaus said.
Nicklaus added that it was annoying for spectators and officials when players pulled out of events, but sympathised with McIlroy who texted to say he would not be able to play because of a rib injury.
"The US Open is a big thing in his career," he said. "And I sort of thought the Memorial Tournament was, too. And he supported us. He'll come to play every year he can."