Relax, Masters pool players, Dustin Johnson is going to play after all.
World no. 1 Johnson, who hurt his back in a fall at his Augusta area rental Wednesday afternoon, arrived at the course Thursday for some therapy around noon and then headed to the range to warm up about a half hour later.
He is slated to hit the first tee in Thursday’s last group which includes two-time Masters champ Bubba Watson and Jimmy Walker.
It would have been a sour premature ending for the tour’s hottest golfer, who comes into Augusta having been victorious in three straight tournaments. The 32-year-old is the clear favorite to win the Green Jacket, with strong odds at 11/2 on Wednesday morning that fell to 8/1 after news of his tumble and injury hit the internet.
By getting out on the famed course Thursday, Johnson avoids joining Rory McIlroy, Greg Norman, and Tiger Woods as top-ranked players unable to play in a major championship because of injury.
Johnson made it to the first tee, but officially withdrew from The Masters just minutes before he was set to begin his opening round.