WHEN the field of 87 prepare to tee off at Augusta tomorrow, they are likely to have an interested spectator in Charlie Daniels.

Away from the bright lights of Premier League football, the Cherries full-back is a keen golfer, with an impressive handicap approaching single figures.

So given the news Daniels had to soak up in the past week, he could take some comfort from the timing of the Masters, the first men's golfing major of the year, to help pass the time.

The 32-year-old’s season was knocked into the rough with confirmation he would miss the start of next season after undergoing surgery following a partial dislocation of his left kneecap suffered in training.

Discussing his love of golf in an interview with the Cherries website, Daniels said: “It’s a release from football and something different in which you can still be competitive.

“For me it’s a release from everything. It’s nice to walk around the course and get away from things for a few hours and recharge.”

Recharging is exactly what Daniels will need as he became the latest in a string of injury setbacks for Cherries this season.

At left-back, the injury situation worsened in the past few days. A post on Diego Rico's Instagram page said he would be out for around six weeks with an ankle ligament issue.

Club captain Simon Francis, who like Daniels joined the Dorset club in November 2011 in League One, is ruled out for the remainder of the campaign.

Fellow defender Steve Cook is working his way back from a groin problem, while Lewis Cook and Andrew Surman are also on the recovery trail.

Not only have Cherries lost a reliable operator at left-back in Daniels, but as young centre-back Chris Mepham told the Daily Echo, removing three leaders at the back at once makes life difficult.

Mepham said: “They are three big characters to lose and three good players to lose.

“Charlie is one of the oldest lads in the back four so it’s a massive miss for us.

“We were all gutted when we heard the news that he’s going to be out for as long as he is.

“We haven’t really got loads and loads of defenders at the minute so for someone like Charlie with his experience to come out of the team is a massive loss for us.”

While his experience is there for all to see, when it comes to long-term absences, Daniels is a relative rookie.

His two-month lay-off earlier this season was the longest the defender had spent on the treatment table since a three-month absence in January 2014. He missed just 13 league matches between then and the start of this season.

But Daniels will have plenty of empathy from those around him at Cherries.

Boss Eddie Howe was forced to hang up his boots at 29 due to a persistent knee problem while striker Callum Wilson has twice recovered from knee ligament damage to return better than before.

With this support and the steely determination Daniels has shown in his career to rise up through the leagues, he will no doubt be out of the bunker and back on the fairway in the Cherries defence come the autumn.