Richard Sterne has been carrying a torn labrum hip injury throughout 2013 and is due to have surgery on it after the Nedbank Golf Challenge. Until then he'll have to grit his teeth, starting at this week's DP World Tour Championship.
The Joburg Open champion currently holds eighth place in the Race to Dubai. He's close enough to race leader Henrik Stenson that a win at Jumeirah Golf Estate this week will earn him enough to overtake the Swede.
But those thoughts were far from Sterne's mind as he looked ahead to the coming months.
“I can't continue hitting in pain,” he said. “There are some days that it's bad, but it's always there. It's just not something that comes and goes. Unfortunately with some things like that, it is, I've waited two years. Three months is nothing.”
Also heading into the week under strain is Louis Oosthuizen, who undergoes surgery a week after the DP World Tour Champs. King Louis will need to take it easy, because his injuries are centred around a facet joint block in his lower back.
“I'm really struggling with the lower back, but it comes and goes,” Oosthuizen said during the Turkish Airlines Open. “Today it felt good, but other days it's just really bad and can't properly swing, swing through the ball. So the guy said I can't really hurt it any further, so I'm just finishing these events and then getting an injection done, and hopefully it'll work.”