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Francesco Molinari

Molinari makes late withdrawal from Arnold Palmer Invitational

Francesco Molinari will not be defending his Arnold Palmer Invitational title after being forced to withdraw with a back injury
 

Francesco Molinari’s defence of his Arnold Palmer Invitational title was over before it began at Bay Hill as he was forced to withdraw prior to his opening round with a back injury.

The Italian was due to tee it up alongside Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose on Thursday morning in Florida but pulled out just hours before his tee time.

Molinari has not won a tournament since this event last year and, after losing out to Tiger Woods at the Masters, has seen a huge decline in form.

His 2020 began poorly with missed cuts in his first three events and just a 53rd place finish in the 72-player WGC-Mexico Championship.

Molinari talked earlier this week of “a few physical things and a few technical things” that were perhaps to blame for his poor form.

With a return to Augusta just a few weeks away, he also said: “I think I’ve got some good planning for the next few weeks building up to Augusta and some good direction to work towards.”

It’s yet to be seen how severe this injury is and how it could affect his Masters build up.

Molinari has been replaced in the field by South Korea’s Kyoung-Hoon Lee.

Joe Hughes

Tour editor covering men's golf, women's golf and anything else that involves the word golf, really. The talk is far better than the game, but the work has begun to change that.

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