Spanish golfer Miguel Angel Jimenez will be out of action for at least three months after breaking his leg in a skiing accident on Saturday.
"I was skiing in Sierra Nevada, I lost control and fell," Jimenez was quoted as saying in local media on Sunday.
"I felt a huge stab of pain and I knew straight away I had broken something," he said, adding that he had been operated on at a clinic in his native Malaga.
"I broke the top of the tibia in my right leg, just where it meets the knee, and they put in two pins.
"It will take three, four or five months to recover and be able to return to competition. I was playing very well but... these things happen in life."
Jimenez, who will be 49 on Saturday, was named European Tour golfer of the month in November after his victory at the Hong Kong Open made him the oldest winner in Tour history at 48 years and 318 days.
He has won 19 times on the European Tour and was Europe's fourth assistant captain for the 2012 Ryder Cup.
A lover of fine wines and cigars and known for his trademark ponytail, he said he had fashioned a love of skiing some years ago and was well aware of the risks.