Brandt Snedeker, the reigning FedExCup champ and current points leader, has withdrawn from the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship due to sore ribs.
Snedeker won the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on Sunday after runner-up finishes each of the previous two weeks. It was his second PGA TOUR win in his last six starts dating back to the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. He also finished third at the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions.
Snedeker, who is ranked No. 4 in the world, has been replaced in the Accenture field by Fredrik Jacobson, who is ranked No. 66. Shane Lowry, who finished .002 points ahead of Jacobson at No. 65 when the field was finalized on Sunday, got into the elite event when Phil Mickelson withdrew because his children are on a school break and the family is taking a vacation.
Snedeker, who played five of the first six weeks of the season, started feeling soreness in his left rib cage at the Humana Challenge. The soreness returned Thursday at Pebble Beach.
Currently on vacation with his family on Maui the FedExCup leader, will return to Nashville later this week and see his physician, who has already suggested immediate rest. Snedeker hopes to return for the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at Doral.
"I certainly will miss competing in the Accenture Match Play Championship, and I really do appreciate what Accenture does to make that one of the premier events on our schedule," Snedeker said.
Jacobson, who has been nursing a back injury, tied for seventh at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, which was just his second TOUR event since last October. To be honest, the Accenture Match Play Championship wasn't even on his radar screen.
"At that point I was just happy, I had had a long break, some back issues and to play some golf and get into tournament rhythm, and also get a little bit into the heat of things, that was really good," Jacobson said. "That's one thing that you can't really practice at home. You've got to put yourself in that situation.
"So I was just excited about that. I didn't think at all about the Match Play at that point. I was just happy to be playing golf and focusing on doing well.
I'm really happy to be part of it now and get a chance to play a little more golf that week."
When Jacobson saw he was the first alternate on Monday, he decided to take his family to Tucson -- just in case. Turns out the decision was a prescient one.
Jacobson has played in the Accenture Match Play Championship three times, most recently last year when he lost in the first round. His other appearances came in 2005 (another first-round loss) and 2004 (when he reached the quarterfinals).
"I'm excited to come back," Jacobson said. "I was there a few years before last year, and any of these tournaments, the WGCs, the majors; if you're on the bubble for them, you want to get some kind of rhythm where you get to play a lot of them and get accustomed to the courses."