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World number one Johnson pulls out of Masters with back injury minutes before teeing off

It’s been a dramatic start to the first Major of the year.

Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

Updated at 19.15

DUSTIN JOHNSON HAS withdrawn from the US Masters as a result of the back injury he sustained in a heavy fall on the eve of the tournament.

The world number one fell on the stairs at his rental home on Wednesday and was consequently a doubt throughout Thursday, with conflicting reports emerging on the state of his fitness.

Initially, it was reported that Johnson was going to tee off at Augusta and he made his way over to the first tee to begin his round.

However, the American was seen grimacing during his practice swings and shortly after it was confirmed by the PGA Tour that the US Open champion had pulled out of the tournament.

After breaking his Major duck last year, Johnson was the favourite to claim victory in Georgia this week having embarked on a three-tournament winning streak.

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However, his injury means he will become just the second world number one — after Tiger Woods in 2014 — to miss the Masters.

Johnson was due to be part of the day’s final pairing alongside Jimmy Walker and Bubba Watson.

You can keep up to date with the scoring at Augusta right here.

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