Pre-tournament favourite Dustin Johnson withdrew from the Masters just moments before his tee time following a back injury picked up on Wednesday.

Johnson, who had won on each of his last three PGA Tour starts, was due to tee off at 7.03pm UK time alongside Bubba Watson and Jimmy Walker in the day’s final grouping.

The 32-year-old had been out on the range earlier after seeking medical advice in which he was told he would only be able to swing at 75 percent.

After testing out his golf swing Johnson was visibly struggling not even able to bend down with his brother and caddie, Austin, having to tee it up for him.

Following consultation with the rest of his team he made his way to the first tee but his participation was short-lived following discussions with course officials he headed back towards the clubhouse dejected before revealed he didn’t believe he could’ve been competitive this week.

“It sucks. I want to play. I’m playing the best golf of my life and to have a freak accident happen yesterday afternoon, it sucks really bad,” Johnson told reporters.

“I have been worked on all morning and obviously I can take some swings, but I can’t swing full, I can’t make my normal swing and I didn’t think there was any chance I could compete.

“I was wearing socks and slipped and went down three stairs. The left side of my lower back took the brunt of it and my left elbow is bruised as well.”