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Ian Woosnam has leapt to the defence of Robert MacIntyre over his decision to skip this week’s Memorial Tournament.

MacIntyre earned himself a spot at the $20million showpiece hosted by Jack Nicklaus with his epic maiden PGA Tour win at the RBC Canadian Open. 

But his withdrawal from the tournament in Ohio was confirmed on Monday as he instead travelled back home to Oban in West Scotland for a week of celebration and rest ahead of next week’s US Open.

MacIntyre has played six tournaments in a row and wanted to recuperate back home before another busy stretch starting at Pinehurst.

• Robert MacIntyre defends decision to skip Memorial Tournament

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That decision still drew criticism in some quarters on social media, however, with some even suggesting that MacIntyre lacked ambition for turning down the signature PGA Tour event.

But Ryder Cup great Woosnam dismissed those critics with a pointed social media message on Thursday.

“Has a professional golfer you have to do what is best for you if your mind and body is telling you to take a rest do it,” the former Masters champion wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “And If there’s was one person in the world who would tell you this it would be be Jack Nicklaus.”

• Richard Bland hits out at PGA Tour over ‘dishonesty’

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MacIntyre was also keen to stress that he mean’t no disrespect to 18-time major champion Nicklaus with his withdrawal.

“If I played Memorial, US Open and the Travelers, that’s nine weeks in a row. Not many players play nine weeks in a row, except probably me the madman,” the 27-year-old said.

“With everything that was going on, there was no disrespect [intended] for pulling out of Jack Nicklaus’s event.
“This was all about what was right for me and the fifth week in a row at Colonial I thought was even a step too far after having a chance to win at Myrtle Beach, an outside chance at the (US) PGA.

“There was a lot going on and I just thought it was the right thing to pull back, have a week off. It could have been any event. Yes, I get that it’s an elevated event and it’s 20 million or whatever it is.

“But does preparing right for the US Open not show ambition? It’s up to you.”

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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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