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After 12 years hiding in the shadows, Anthony Kim has finally laid bare the reasons behind his mysterious recluse from golf.

Kim had not played competitive golf since 2012 when the shock announcement was made in February that he was returning as a wild card on the LIV Golf League.

Now, after making his much-anticipated comeback, the enigmatic American has revealed new details about his story in an extensive interview with LIV Golf’s David Feherty.

The 38-year-old opens up on some “very dark moments” after dealing with addiction and numerous surgeries.

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“I really didn’t leave the house. I watched a lot of TV. Ate a lot of food and just really hung out with my animals and occasionally had a good time,” he said on LIV Golf Plus when asked about his disappearance.

Kim has largely existed in hearsay for over a decade after he reportedly cashed in an eight-figure insurance payout to unofficially retire following a slew of debilitating injuries.

An Achilles injury plagued his final season on the PGA Tour and Kim has since had shoulder and hand surgeries, as well as spinal fusion treatment.

On his rumoured financial settlement, Kim said: “I’m not at liberty to talk about the details of the settlement and what happened regarding that. I know public opinion was that I took this money and ran and decided I was going to hang out but that wasn’t the case at all.

“I had multiple, multiple surgeries and my body still isn’t what it used to be.”

Kim also revealed that he had serious offers to return to the PGA Tour before choosing to join LIV, and only started hitting balls again three months ago after a phone call from the Saudi-backed league’s commissioner Greg Norman.

“There’s lots of opinions whether I’ve played a lot of golf or not and the honest answer is no,” he said. “I have not played any golf until about two-and-a-half or three months ago when I got the call from Greg about possibly playing again.

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“I wasn’t even considering playing golf. I’m just going to take it day by day, work hard and see where that gets me. The guys are getting better, I’ve been away for a long time so there’s a lot of rust but I feel I’m able to compete if I keep working on the right things.”

When asked if it was Norman who instigated his return, Kim revealed it was his wife Emily’s interest that reignited his own interest in the game.

“Really my wife is the reason I started playing golf again,” he admitted. “She wanted to learn the game. I said ‘this is not what you want to do. You’ll end up tearing your hair out’, but fortunately for me and her she stuck with it and really wanted to get better so I started spending a little bit more time on the golf course and that got me interested in playing again.”

Kim continued: “I have an interesting relationship with golf. I don’t think I ever loved it. What’s very weird to me right now is that I’m falling in love with the game. That’s such a weird spot for me because golf was filled with pressure and lots of different emotions for me because my family had to go through a lot to give me this opportunity to play golf.

“With that added pressure I was willing to risk a lot more. That was my nature. I was aggressive on the course and I was aggressive off the golf course. And that led to my demise.”

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Ben Parsons joined bunkered as a Content Producer in 2023 and is the man to come to for all of the latest news, across both the professional and amateur games. Formerly of The Mirror and Press Association, he is a member at Halifax Golf Club and is a long-suffering fan of both Manchester United and the Wales rugby team.

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