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USA Today via Reuters

USA Today via Reuters

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  Debate

Debate

Will Zalatoris' hip problems spell doom for his PGA Tour hopes, or is a comeback on the horizon?

The back injury is causing no headache for Will Zalatoris. The one-time PGA Tour winner pulled out of the Rocket Mortgage Classic after playing eight holes last Saturday. Later, his manager, Allen Hobbs, wrote in a statement that Zalatoris felt a little discomfort in his back

Whereas, on the live broadcast, Amanda Balionis said Zalatoris had told her he heard a ‘pop’ in his hip, but not on the one where he underwent surgery. It has been a ‘will he, or won’t he’ moment since then. But Zalatoris is steadily recovering and will travel across the pond. 

Ryan Lavner of Golf Channel reported that there is no schedule change for the 27-year-old. The Wake Forest alum is all set to tee off at the Open Championship at Royal Troon on July 18. However, it is not clear if the one-time PGA Tour winner will tee off at the Genesis Scottish Open or not. He missed the cut the last time he teed off at the Renaissance Club.

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Poll of the day

Do you think Will Zalatoris can bounce back from his hip injury to win a major?

Absolutely

No way

Maybe, if he takes it slow

Only time will tell

At the time of his comeback, Will Zalatoris said he was ‘cognizant of every little detail’ in his body after the surgery. The Rocket Mortgage was his second withdrawal of the season. But like the Byron Nelson one, the Detroit saga also turned out to be a precautionary measure.

The former Demon Deacon revealed he had taken certain steps to eliminate the possibility of a future setback. Like Tiger Woods after his ankle surgery, Zalatoris is also trying to figure out what works best for his body. 

Will Zalatoris went through a swing change in 2024

Zalatoris first injured his back shortly after his breakthrough victory at the 2022 FedEx St. Jude Championship. Rehab followed but that was like putting a band-aid to an injury that required more, he later revealed.

The microdisectomy in April 2023 hasn’t changed much in his pre-round schedule. But post-round is a different ordeal. ice bath, dry needling, and a session with physio follow his return from the clubhouse. Zalatoris 2.0 is also a different one from the 2022 FedEx. St. Jude Championship winner.

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via Reuters

His clubhead speed is 117.02 miles, compared to an average of 119 miles he notched in 2022. In tangible terms, the impact is a good 15-yard difference in his length off the tee. With a shorter driver in hand, Will Zalatoris now averages 299.9 yards, compared to 314.5 yards in 2022. 

Reducing the impact on the clubhead removes the pressure from his back. But the former Demon Deacon conceded during the Travelers Championship that he slipped into his old swing habit at times

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The Dallas resident showed a steady resurgence in the first part of the season. However, his form took a nosedive after the Masters. In his last eight starts, his best-place finish has been a T41 at the Memorial. 

Interestingly, Zalatoris cautioned in January that something might pop up if he played too many tournaments back-to-back. Rocket Mortgage was his fourth consecutive week of golf. Will Zalatoris is trying to figure out the right cadence. It’s not a 100-meter sprint, but a marathon.