Golf / Sports

Tiger Woods arrives for PGA Championship, gets registration extension

Tiger Woods has arrived at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky., to prepare for the PGA Championship, although it is still unclear if he will be able to play.

Woods has been granted an extension by the PGA of America to register for the tournament. Golfers had until Tuesday evening to declare if they would play or not, but Woods filed a request for an extension to officially enter the year's final major tournament

"Then all he needs to do is show up to his tee time on Thursday morning," Brett Sterba, director of the PGA Championship, told the Louisville Courier Journal newspaper.

Early reports from Valhalla said Woods will test the condition of his aching back Wednesday during a practice round. Woods' caddie, Joe LaCava, has been at Valhalla all week to check out the course and swing coach Sean Foley reportedly will join them for the practice round.

When last seen, Woods was gingerly walking off the course at Firestone Country Club after withdrawing from the Bridgestone Invitational because of spasms in his back. He had surgery in March to relieve a pinched nerve in his back and doesn't appear to have made a full recovery.

If Woods enters the PGA Championship -- he has until 7:35 a.m. central time to join Phil Mickelson and Padraig Harrington on the first tee -- it will be his fourth tournament since his surgery. He hasn't fared well after the surgery, missing the cut at the Quicken Loans National and finishing 69th at the British Open in his first two tournaments.

Kerry Haigh, the PGA's chief championships officer, said alternates are on site to replace golfers who can't compete.

"Every PGA Championship, we always have the alternates literally on the putting green or practice range during the tee off, the two-hour tee period," Haigh said. "So if any player either misses their tee time because they were running late, caught in traffic or whatever, or somebody calls and says they are withdrawing, that alternate is there ready to go."

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