Golf: Australian world No. 1 Jason Day out of World Cup with back injury

Jason Day of Australia waits on the second tee during the second round of the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club on Sept 23, 2016, in Atlanta, Georgia.
Jason Day of Australia waits on the second tee during the second round of the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club on Sept 23, 2016, in Atlanta, Georgia. PHOTO: AFP

MELBOURNE (AFP) - Australia's world No.1 Jason Day has pulled out of next month's World Cup in Melbourne with a back injury.

The 10-time PGA Tour winner was planning on returning home to play in the Nov 23-27 event at the Kingston Heath course for the first time since he and countryman Adam Scott won the event in 2013.

"I regret that I will be unable to come home to Australia this year," Day said in a statement on Friday.

"I was looking forward to playing in the Australian Open and teaming up with Adam Scott on one of my favourite courses Kingston Heath the following week at the World Cup in Melbourne.

"My plan is to return home to Australia in 2017. My best wishes to Adam and Team Australia at the World Cup."

Day tore a ligament in his back towards the end of the 2016 PGA Tour season, forcing his withdrawal from the BMW Championship and the Tour Championship.

He has been advised to rest until next year and the prospect of a long trip to Australia in the midst of his rehabilitation and rest period was not recommended by medical staff.

Day has also pulled out of a charity match against former world No.1 Rory McIlroy in the Philippines on Nov 29, a statement from the Australian PGA said.

Scott, now the highest-ranked player from Australia, will now select a new partner to form one of the 28 two-man teams who will represent their countries at the World Cup.

This year's tournament will return to a 72-hole, strokeplay, two-man team event format.

The first and third days of competition will be the foursomes format and the second and final days are fourball play.