Johnson to take sabbatical

Dustin Johnson has announced he is to take a break from golf, effective immediately.

The American said that he would seek “professional help for personal challenges I have faced.”

The world number 16 will not contest next week’s US PGA Championship and looks set to also miss the FedEx Cup Series and possibly the Ryder Cup in September.

Johnson is currently fifth in the US points standings with the top nine after Valhalla sealing a berth on Tom Watson’s team for Gleneagles.

If he remains in an automatic qualifying place, the player who ends up 10th in the table would take his place.

“I am taking a leave of absence from professional golf, effective immediately. I will use this time to seek professional help for personal challenges I have faced,” the golfer said in a statement.

“By committing the time and resources necessary to improve my mental health, physical well-being and emotional foundation, I am confident that I will be better equipped to fulfil my potential and become a consistent champion.

“I respectfully ask my fans, well-wishers and the media for privacy as I embark upon this mission of self-improvement.”

The PGA Tour released a statement which read: “We have nothing to add to Dustin’s statement but wish him well and look forward to his return to the PGA Tour in the future.”