Chris Kirk, from Atlanta, hits his approach shot on the 8th hole during the opening round of the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club. The Tour Championship is the final tournament of golf's post season, the FedEx Cup. The winner of the cup takes home $10 million in prize money. BRANT SANDERLIN / BSANDERLIN@AJC.COM .
Photo: BRANT SANDERLIN / BSANDERLIN@AJ/bsanderlin@ajc.com
Photo: BRANT SANDERLIN / BSANDERLIN@AJ/bsanderlin@ajc.com

Chris Kirk to take indefinite leave from PGA Tour to deal with issues

Chris Kirk announced that he is taking an indefinite leave from the PGA Tour to deal with alcohol abuse and depression on Tuesday.

Kirk, who played golf at and graduated from Etowah High and Georgia, made the declaration on social media.

He wrote in a Twitter post: Tomorrow I will celebrate my 34th birthday but I have already begun a new and better chapter in my life. Thank you to my friends and family for being there for me.”

He added, in a red box, the following: “I have dealt with alcohol abuse and depression for some time now. I thought I could control it, but after multiple relapses, I have to come to realize that I can’t fix it on my own. I will be taking an indefinite leave from the PGA Tour to deal with these issues. I don’t know when I will be back, but for now I need my full focus on being the man my family deserves. Thank you for your support.”

Kirk won his first of four PGA Tour events at the Sanderson Farms Championship in 2011. He won again at the McGladrey Classic in 2013, the Deutsche Bank Championship in 2014 and the Colonial in 2015.

Kirk was ranked as high as 16th in the world but now stands at 188. He has missed 11 of 17 cuts this season, including his last four events. His best finish this year was a tie for 15th at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

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