Matsuyama (wrist) withdraws from Sony Open
HONOLULU – Hideki Matsuyama’s Sony Open is over before it began. The 21-year-old Japanese standout played all 18 holes of Wednesday’s pro-am, then promptly withdrew from this week's tournament.
He told a group of Japanese media members that his left wrist was bothering him, the same concern that had kept him on the sidelines since winning the Casio Open on Nov. 27.
It’s the second time in less than three months that Matsuyama has taken the steam out of a story that had ignited a buzz with members of the Japanese golf media. In October, fresh off of his outstanding play at the Presidents Cup and a share of third at the Frys.com Open, Matsuyama was signed on for the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas, where Japanese phenom Ryo Ishikawa also was entered.
Matsuyama withdrew from that tournament, too. That time, he cited illness, not an injury, though it was pretty much accepted that it was a case of exhaustion. Matsuyama followed that withdrawal with three tournaments in Japan, a T-28, a T-6, and the Casio effort, his fourth win of the season over there.
That effort had again fueled enthusiasm within Japanese golf circles, because Matsuyama and Ishikawa were entered into the Sony field. Matsuyama has status because as a non-member in 2013 he still piled up enough FedEx Cup points to have been within the top 125. Ishikawa finished 13th in the Web.com Tour Finals.
Matsuyama explained to Japanese reporters that he had come to Hawaii with concern about his left wrist, but he felt obligated to at least compete in the pro-am because he had played here in each of the past two years on a sponsor exemption.
Matsuyama was replaced in the field by Robert Streb, who gained a spot when first alternate Shawn Stefani did not make the trip.