Couples withdraws from Boeing Classic

Fred Couples

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SNOQUALMIE, Wash. — Fred Couples withdrew from the Champion's Tour Boeing Classic on Friday because of back problems on the first hole.

Couples, from Seattle, has a long history of back issues and took three weeks off before the tournament.

After his drive on No. 1 at the TPC Snoqualmie Ridge, Couples lagged behind partners Mark O'Meara and John Cook and rubbed his lower back. When Couples reached his ball, he had a conversation with O'Meara and the two fist pumped. O'Meara and Cook hit their second shots and walked ahead. Couples told his caddie to pick up his ball and the two waited for a cart to return to the clubhouse.

The 1992 Masters champion won the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic in March and Senior British Open last month.

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