'Painful to watch': Tiger Woods in shocking PGA Championship first

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·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
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Tiger Woods. has withdrawn before the final round of the PGA Championship, the first time he has withdrawn from a major in his career. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Tiger Woods has withdrawn before the final round of the PGA Championship, the first time he has withdrawn from a major in his career. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Tiger Woods' unlikely comeback at the PGA Championship has been cut short, with the 46-year-old withdrawing from the final round.

It marks the first time in Woods' storied career that he has withdrawn during a major, however he had clearly been troubled by his surgically repaired right leg during a difficult third round.

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Woods limped his way around in the cold and wind, at one point making five straight bogeys on his way to an unfortunate near career-high card of 79.

Declining to speak to media and only addressing a pool reporter afterwards, Woods initially said he would see how he was feeling before making a decision on his final round at Southern Hills.

That decision came sooner than expected, with Woods' five straight bogies the first time he's endured such a streak of misfortune.

The chilly weather was doing Woods no favours due to his extensive history of injuries and bogeys at the seventh and ninth - where he thinned his second shot into the face of a bunker - completed a miserable front nine of 41.

Four more bogeys to start the back nine left Woods in danger of recording his worst score in any major, his unwanted mark of 81 set in terrible weather in the 2002 Open Championship at Muirfield.

"I just didn't play well," Woods said.

"I didn't hit the ball very well and got off to not the start I needed to get off to. I thought I hit a good tee shot down two and ended up in the water, and just never really got any kind of momentum on my side."

Fans were stunned by Woods' decision, with many taking to social media in surprise.

Woods has made the cut in the two majors he has played since his right leg was battered in a car crash 15 months ago.

In typical fashion he refused to throw in the towel, holing from 35 feet for his first birdie of the day on the 15th and celebrating by sardonically holding one finger in the chilly air.

He then finished with three pars to card his worst US PGA score, eclipsing a 77 in the first round in 2011.

Comeback from injury still troubling Tiger Woods

Woods was competing in his second tournament since a gruesome single-car accident 15 months ago left him with multiple right leg fractures.

He placed 47th at the Masters last month in his return to competitive golf.

Woods gave no indication his right leg was troubling him at the Masters, but admitted as early as the first day of the PGA Championship that he was struggling a little.

On several occasions, Woods hit 2-iron stingers off the tee rather than use his driver. He favoured his right leg late in the round and his condition seemed to slow him down.

Tiger Woods struggled to play on his recovering right leg at the PGA Championship, ultimately electing to withdraw before the final round. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Tiger Woods struggled to play on his recovering right leg at the PGA Championship, ultimately electing to withdraw before the final round. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

"It has felt better before," Woods said ruefully of his leg.

"It's a little sore right now and we'll go back and start the process of getting ready for tomorrow."

Woods was asked if he knew the television cameras had caught him wincing, replying: "My leg is not feeling as good as I'd like it to be."

On his final hole, Woods hit his approach well over the green. His third shot did not make it out of the rough, leading to one last bogey.

Woods won the PGA Championship the last time it was held at Southern Hills in 2007.

With AAP

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