April 29, 2006

Concerned Woods to miss Wachovia

By Mark Lamport-Stokes

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - As expected, world number one Tiger
Woods will miss next week's Wachovia Championship in Charlotte,
North Carolina to spend more time with his ailing father.

Woods has played the Wachovia event the last two years but
said earlier this month he was likely to take an extended break
from the PGA Tour and may not play again until the U.S. Open in

The deadline for the May 4-7 Wachovia Championship entries
was Friday, and the game's leading player was a notable
absentee once the list was confirmed.

American Woods, who has not played competitively since
tying for third at the U.S. Masters three weeks ago, has had a
lot on his mind this year.

While driven to add to his career haul of 10 major titles,
his thoughts have never strayed far from his 74-year-old father
Earl, who has been battling prostate cancer since 1998.

His father's condition has deteriorated since the end of
last year and Woods junior skipped the final practice day for
the Players Championship at Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida in March
to visit his father in California.

At the time, he said he would also consider missing the
Masters, the first major of the year.


Last week, Woods was in New Zealand for the wedding of his
caddie Steve Williams. Once again, his father was uppermost in
his mind.

"It's kinda up in the air with the situation back home, so
I don't know what's going to happen," Woods told reporters in
Auckland, where it was announced he would race in a celebrity
stockcar race for his caddie's charitable foundation.

"I'm taking time off. I'm here for this event and for
Steve, and to enjoy time off and be with my father, so I won't
play for a while," he added.

"My father is hanging in there, the guy is an absolute

Woods, who won a 12-lap race on a dirt track in Huntly and
also went bungee jumping while in New Zealand, hosts his annual
Tiger Jam fundraiser in Las Vegas on Saturday when British rock
star Sting will perform.

He will then have until next Friday to decide whether he
will play in the May 11-14 Byron Nelson Championship in Texas,
another event that usually features on his PGA Tour schedule.

Woods will seek his 11th major title at the U.S. Open, to
be played at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York from
June 15-18.