Australian tour golf veteran Stuart Appleby has made a promising return from back surgery.
Appleby shot a closing three-under 68 to tie for 36th at six-under on the secondary web.com Tour’s Nova Scotia Open in Halifax on Sunday.
It was his first start since undergoing surgery in March to repair a herniated disc.
A nine-time winner on the US PGA Tour, 44-year-old Appleby was due to make his return last week in the main tour’s Traveler’s Championship but withdrew before the pro-am.
Had he played there he would ruled himself ineligible for five rehab starts on the web.com Tour that he is allowed under PGA Tour policy.
Instead he returned to his Orlando, Florida home and played four rounds to ready himself.
“After pulling out of the Travelers, I needed to work on my endurance,” Appleby told Nova Scotia media last week.
“I played nearly four rounds of golf pushing a buggy in the central Florida heat which was hard work. I got a fair amount of conditioning back.
“When I came here, I felt way better than the first two days of the practice rounds at the Travelers.
“I’ve made a good shift physically to where my body was working with me and not against me.”