By Tony Jimenez
SANDWICH, England (Reuters) - Double U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen has pulled out of the British Open because of a back injury, organizers said Friday.
The South African, who is ranked 21st in the world, carded a six-over-par 76 in the opening round at Royal St George's on Thursday.
Goosen's withdrawal means that his first-round playing partners Anders Hansen of Denmark and American Hunter Mahan will go out as a two-ball at 1432 local time.
The 42-year-old Goosen, who won the U.S. Open in 2001 and 2004, was making his 17th appearance at the British Open. His best finishes are a tie for fifth at St Andrews in 2005 and at Turnberry four years later.
(Editing by Martyn Herman. To comment on this story: firstname.lastname@example.org)