Gary Anderson pulls out of The Masters due to injury
Anderson out of Masters due to back problem; Flying Scotsman hoping to recover in time for start of Premier League next week, live on Sky Sports
Last Updated: 30/01/19 2:04pm
Gary Anderson has withdrawn from the opening tournament of the year, The Masters, with a back injury.
He will be replaced by Stephen Bunting for the event in Milton Keynes, which begins on Friday.
Scotland's Anderson has been regularly plagued by back issues in recent times, and has undergone treatment ever since his elimination from the World Darts Championship.
I've been having a lot of physio work over the last few weeks and, as everyone knows, I've been struggling with my back for a long time.
"I'm really sorry to the fans that I won't be there this weekend but it's a long year and I want to make sure I'm out of action for as little time as possible," said Anderson.
"I've been having a lot of physio work over the last few weeks and, as everyone knows, I've been struggling with my back for a long time.
"This is not a decision I've taken lightly but I haven't been able to sleep properly, and even just a few minutes practice causes severe pain, so my physio advised me I must rest at the moment to reduce the risk of causing any serious long-term damage."
Anderson's withdrawal this weekend boosts his hopes of playing in the opening week of Premier League Darts, which is live on Sky Sports on February 7.
Anderson is scheduled to face Mensur Suljovic in Newcastle in his first match of the Premier League.
Don't forget that the Premier League action gets underway on Thursday, February 7 in Newcastle. You can also stay up to date by following us@SkySportsDarts and get all the latest news and interviews by heading to www.skysports.com/darts