Tiger Woods announcement leaves golf fans shattered after 'sad' twist in comeback event

The 48-year-old played six holes in his second round at the Genesis Invitational before calling it quits.

Tiger Woods, pictured here after withdrawing from the Genesis Invitational.
Tiger Woods was driven from the course after playing just six holes in the second round of the Genesis Invitational. Image: Getty

Golf fans are fearing the worst for Tiger Woods after the American legend withdrew from the Genesis Invitational after just six holes on Friday due to illness. Playing in his first PGA Tour event of the year and first official tournament since the Masters last April, Woods called it quits after just 24 holes.

The 48-year-old hit his tee shot on the seventh on Friday, before he asked for a cart to be brought out and was driven off the course by a rules official. PGA Tour official Mark Dusbabek said on the telecast that Woods had an illness, and his withdrawal was not related to his ankle or back.

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Rob McNamara, his long-time associate and vice president of TGR Ventures, reported later that Woods felt flu symptoms on Thursday night, which became worse when he woke up. "He had a little bit of a fever and was better during the warm-up, but then when he got out there and was walking and playing, he started feeling dizzy," McNamara told a PGA Tour official.

"Ultimately, the doctors are saying he's got potentially some type of flu and that he was dehydrated. He's been treated with an IV bag and he's doing much, much better, and he'll be released on his own here soon."

Woods said he suffered a back spasm on Thursday when he shanked a shot horribly on the final hole of his opening round. He was 1-over par for his second round and projected just outside the cut when he called it quits.

Dusbabek had earlier said the back was not the issue on Friday. "Not what we’re being told by him right now," Dusbabek said. "It's an illness. He's not feeling well. I’m sure that’s part and parcel to the reason, but he’s not feeling well. He’s feeling ill right now.”

Tiger Woods, pictured here being driven off the course.
Tiger Woods is driven off the course after withdrawing during the second round of the Genesis Invitational golf tournament.

Woods was seeing with his head buried in his hands as he was driven off the course. He hadn't played an official event since the Masters last April, when he also withdrew in the middle of the third round of the rain-delayed major. He played the unofficial Hero World Challenge in December against a 20-man field with no cut, and then took part in the 36-hole PNC Championship with his son.

Tiger Woods.
Tiger Woods looked devastated after withdrawing from the Genesis Invitational. Image: Golf Channel

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The 15-time major winner had said he was hopeful of playing one tournament a month this year - including all four majors. That would theoretically mean that Woods will try to compete in either the Arnold Palmer Invitational or The Players Championship next month.

But after his first competitive round in more than 10 months on Thursday, the 48-year-old admitted he wasn't sure whether that plan would actually eventuate. "I'm hoping that's the case, hoping that I play that much," Woods said. "As far as the physical ups and downs, that's just part of my body, that's part of what it is. That's all right, I accept it and accept the challenges."

Woods has played just nine official tournaments in the last four seasons, missing the cut twice and withdrawing three times. He suffered devastating injuries to his leg in a car accident in 2021, and has struggled to get back to his best ever since.

He underwent a second fusion procedure on his ankle after he withdrew from the Masters last year, however he said on both Wednesday and Thursday that his ankle wasn’t bothering him. He previously said the ankle procedure alleviated debilitating pain, but he will never again be able to practice and play the way he did in his prime.

Max Homa, who won the event in 2021, said earlier this week that the return of Woods was a huge boost for golf. "Every event's better when Tiger is here," Homa said. "It's pretty amazing what he brings to an event with his presence on the golf course. Obviously it's great that he's had his name attached to this, but you want to see him play, all the fans want to see him play." Those same fans were understandably left devastated after his latest withdrawal on Friday.

with agencies

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