Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Former champion Michael Campbell out of U.S. Open

updated 2:29 PM EDT, Wed May 14, 2014
Michael Campbell's 2005 U.S. Open win at Pinehurst was undoubtedly the highlight of his career. But the New Zealander won't be returning to the scene of his triumph after pulling out of this year's tournament. Michael Campbell's 2005 U.S. Open win at Pinehurst was undoubtedly the highlight of his career. But the New Zealander won't be returning to the scene of his triumph after pulling out of this year's tournament.
Former champ Campbell out of U.S. Open
Former champ Campbell out of U.S. Open
Former champ Campbell out of U.S. Open
Former champ Campbell out of U.S. Open
  • 2005 U.S. Open champion Michael Campbell out of this year's tournament
  • New Zealander misses chance to return to scene of his famous triumph at Pinehurst
  • Injury and personal problems mean he has withdrawn from 2014 tournament

Follow us at @WorldSportCNN and like us on Facebook

(CNN) -- Former U.S. Open champion Michael Campbell is to miss out on an emotional return to Pinehurst after withdrawing from this year's tournament.

The New Zealander, who won the 2005 edition of the grand slam on the North Carolina course, has pulled out citing personal and injury problems.

Campbell explained that he had only just recovered from an ankle injury and had recently separated from his wife Julie.

"Sorry I have been off the radar since playing at the 2014 Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship," a statement on his personal website read.

"I have had some problems with a tendon in my left ankle that stopped me from playing for 2 to 3 months. The good news is that I am back swinging and now managing to play 18 holes.

The rise of golf's child stars
Alister MacKenzie's road to Augusta
Secret behind the 'Bubba Long'

"On a personal note, I have some sad news. Unfortunately Julie and I have separated. Our children remain our number one focus as we move forwards -- as parents first and foremost while remaining both friends and business partners.

"As I do not feel that I am either fully physically or mentally ready to play tournament golf at the highest level, after much deliberation, I have decided not to play in the BMW PGA Championship, the US Open or the events in between.

"I want to get back to my best and I believe this is the best strategy to achieve this."

The 45-year-old has endured a lean period since his 2005 U.S. Open triumph, all eight of his career wins coming in 2005 or before, but his is still one of the enduring major championship wins.

Campbell only secured his place at the 2005 tournament after making a birdie on the final hole of a qualifying competition at Walton Heath in England.

Then he held off the challenge of current world No. 1 Tiger Woods -- who was then at the peak of his major-winning powers -- to claim the title by two shots.

He became the first Kiwi in 42 years to claim a major championship, and though he finished tied for sixth at that year's US PGA Championship his game rapidly deserted him.

His third place at the Portugal Masters in October 2012 was his best finish since 2006 though he did record a handful of top-25 finishes in 2013.

Campbell's win at Pinehurst gave him a 10-year exemption at the tournament, meaning 2015 will be the last year he doesn't need to quality, but he now won't be able to relive any of those fond U.S Open memories at Pinehurst.

Read: Kaymer holds on at Players

Golf: Caddie dies, play continues

Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:47 AM EST, Thu December 18, 2014
If golf has a reputation for being a bit stuffy, then the Bryan brothers and their trick shots are a much-needed blast of fresh air.
updated 8:18 AM EST, Thu December 11, 2014
Not many people make the leap from teenage market trader to golf pro and fashion entrepreneur, but that's just what Ian Poulter has done.
updated 6:29 AM EST, Wed November 12, 2014
"Sleep, as far as mental and physical recovery goes, has never been more important ..." says sport sleep coach Nick Littlehales.
updated 5:24 AM EST, Tue November 4, 2014
Joe Miller is devouring his second steak of the day and the clock has barely nudged 2pm. You need lots of fuel to smash a drive 474 yards.
updated 10:49 AM EDT, Mon October 13, 2014
There have been many dark days for Oliver Wilson, but golf's unluckiest loser is finally riding an upward swing of his career roller coaster.
updated 12:48 PM EDT, Tue October 7, 2014
They dress like it's the 1930s and they swing antique equipment that eschews cutting-edge technology -- this is hickory golf.
updated 12:09 PM EDT, Mon September 15, 2014
CNN's Living Golf focuses on women's golf, charting the growth of the sport from royal pastime to multi-million dollar machine.
updated 4:46 AM EDT, Wed October 1, 2014
"I don't know how to paint happy," says golf's poster girl Michelle Wie. "I think it releases a lot of the darker feelings in me."
updated 8:13 AM EDT, Mon September 29, 2014
Phil Mickelson of the United States talks during a press conference after the United States were defeated by Europe after the Singles Matches of the 2014 Ryder Cup on the PGA Centenary course at the Gleneagles Hotel on September 28, 2014 in Auchterarder, Scotland.
If you're a U.S. golf fan, or Tom Watson, look away now.
updated 7:18 PM EDT, Thu September 25, 2014
A ban on uploading social media pictures from the course at Gleneagles was dropped for the Ryder Cup.
updated 6:52 AM EDT, Wed September 24, 2014
A spot of shopping, the odd spa day and some serious flag waving. Welcome to the life of a Ryder Cup WAG.
updated 9:01 AM EDT, Tue September 23, 2014
Tom Watson has learned plenty in the 21 years since he was last U.S. Ryder Cup captain, but social media is proving to be problematic.
updated 8:43 AM EDT, Mon September 22, 2014
Patriotism will reach fever pitch when the USA and Europe collide in golf's Ryder Cup ... and it looks like Rickie Fowler has let it go to his head.
updated 9:42 AM EDT, Mon September 22, 2014
Pressure is inescapable in the cauldron of Ryder Cup competition -- pressure and ping pong.
updated 7:50 AM EDT, Tue September 23, 2014
Millions of golf fans were watching on television with great anticipation. All Martin Kaymer could think about was getting his phone out.