Brandt Snedeker hopes to stay clear of injuries
The American is back on the circuit after a freak Segway accident last year in China
Brandt Snedeker starts a new year in golf with hopes of avoiding an old problem - dealing with injuries. The Tournament of Champions, which starts on Friday, is the American golfer's first event since a freak accident in Shanghai two months ago. Snedeker was on a Segway scooter during a corporate outing at Sheshan International Golf Club when he took a tumble and injured his left knee.
"I had been on one all day in a pro-am," Snedeker said. "I was going down the last hole, seeing how fast I could get it going. I hit a sprinkler head, lost control a little bit and jumped off. I landed on my knee and my knee popped."
He feared he had torn his anterior cruciate ligament. Just his luck, he only suffered a small tear, along with a cracked tibia and a deep bone bruise. It was enough to keep him out of the Australian PGA, World Challenge in California and the Franklin Templeton Shootout in Florida.
Snedeker said the knee felt good now, though the real test starts on Friday.
He spent last week playing at Hideaway in Palm Springs, California, walking 18 holes a day and carrying his own bag. The good news at Kapalua is that he has his caddie. Not so good is that the Plantation Course was built on the side of a mountain featuring steep climbs.
"I've had a few aches and pains of playing again, but nothing that concerns me," Snedeker said. "The only thing I'm worried about is walking 18 holes here. Palm Springs is dead flag. Walking this golf course is different."
In his seven years on tour, Snedeker has had surgery on both hips to correct a degenerative problem.
After one of the hottest stretches of last year - second to Tiger Woods at Torrey Pines, second to Phil Mickelson in Phoenix and then a victory at Pebble Beach - Snedeker had recurring problems with his ribs and missed the next month.