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Robert Karlsson may be out for the season

Swede Robert Karlsson, the 2008 European number one, may need to take the rest of the year off to recover from a serious eye complaint, he said on Wednesday.

Karlsson, who has a blister behind his left retina which is affecting his vision, has not played a tournament since the European Open in late May. He will miss this week’s Scandinavian Masters.

On Wednesday, to satisfy sponsors and host the junior team from his home club, Karlsson played in the Scandinavian Masters pro-am. But his performance only heightened his worries.

“I was optimistic until today,” Karlsson told reporters at the Barseback club near Malmo. “I had real problems with my ball in the rough and in bunkers and even when it was on the fairway my depth of perception wasn’t good.

“There’s no temptation to get back playing sooner than I should because it’s not even fun. I could play this week and perhaps make the cut but that’s about all. And it could prolong the healing process if I do.”

Karlsson will see his eye specialist again on Friday at home in Monaco.

“I’m hoping to be fit for the U.S. PGA Championship (next month). It will all depend on what he says. I’m prepared for being told to take the rest of the year off, though,” he said.

He said his problem stemmed from the pressure of winning last year’s European order of merit and the expectation placed on him this season.

“I can’t explain how it works but I’m told that the stress I’ve put myself under last year and this year could be responsible,” he said.

Jesper Parnevik is another Swede troubled by injury and he is making a flying visit to the European Tour for just this event, which he won in 1995 at Barseback, the year after challenging strongly in the British Open.

“I had surgery in 2000 on my left hip and now I may need the same with my right hip,” Parnevik told reporters. “I’m going to see the surgeon who treated Greg Norman to get his opinion.

“I hope I don’t get trouble because this is a special week. It’s the last time we’ll be playing here for a while.”

The tournament is switching to the Bro Hof Slott course near Stockholm next year, Sweden’s designated course for its 2018 Ryder Cup bid.

July 22, 2009

 




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