Ian Poulter has withdrawn from the Singapore Open after learning that he will be unable to replace his stolen driver in time for round one.

Poulter’s driver was stolen during last week’s HSBC Champions in Shanghai where the Englishman finished in a tie for 14th.

And although that finish saw him pocket almost €60,000, the Ryder cup star is not willing to risk teeing up in a high-class field with world ranking points at stake.

“I am really gutted,” stated the world number 25.

“I have been thinking about it for four hours and I have decided to withdraw because my new driver will not arrive on time.

“It’s disappointing as I did not come all this way not to play.

“But with so many world ranking points at stake, if I played badly I may have lost ground.”

The Singapore Open is the richest national open on the Asian Tour with a total prize fund of $5 million.

Phil Mickelson, who has confirmed that he’ll not be joining the European Tour this year, will be present in Singapore as will Padraig Harrington, Adam Scott and Ernie Els.

Meanwhile, the Race to Dubai takes a break this week and will return next Thursday for the Hong Kong Open.

Where next?

Golf Monthly Fourm: What do you think about Poulter’s withdrawal?
Blog: Ian Poulter: What’s in the bag?
Betting: Singapore Open Betting Guide
Picture Gallery:
Practice at the Singapore Open