Eight holes into his final round at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational yesterday, Tiger Woods had to withdraw due to pain in his lower back, sparking concerns over his immediate future.
The American was three-over-par for the day and 18-shots behind the tournament leader Sergio Garcia when injury forced him to call time on his round.
After his withdrawal, Woods couldn’t guarantee his place in the field for this week’s PGA Championship, saying: “I don't know, Just trying to get out of here.”
There are also fears that Tiger may not make the FedExCup play-offs later this month. Woods entered last week 215th in the standings, only the top 125 in two weeks time feature in the four tournament PGA Tour season finale beginning with the Barclays on August 21.
Tiger Woods back problems strike again
The 38-year-old, playing only his tenth competitive round since returning from back surgery last month, injured himself at the second. By the tenth, the pain was too great for the world No.10 to continue.
"It's just the whole lower back. I don't know what happened.” - Tiger Woods
“It happened on the second hole when I hit my second shot,” said the 14-time major winner. “I fell back into the bunker. I just jarred it, and it's been spasming ever since. It's just the whole lower back. I don't know what happened.”
Bubba Watson praying for Tiger Woods
Woods was paired with fellow American Bubba Watson at Firestone, Ohio, and Watson – a devout Christian – has said he will keep the former world No.1 in his prayers.
“The shot on two is where I think he might have tweaked it a little bit,” said the Masters champion.
“I told him I was praying for him. I know he's going through tough times with his back and body. So I told him I was going to pray for him.”
"So I told him I was going to pray for him.” - Bubba Watson on Tiger Woods
The big-hitting lefthander admitted he didn’t see the incident, but hopes Tiger Woods will be fit enough to join him in the field for this week’s PGA Championship at Valhalla GC, Louisville.
“I didn't see it because I was watching his ball, but they said he jumped back in the bunker, fell in the bunker,” said Watson, who finished up on even-par for the tournament.
“Then hitting out of the rough a few times is just going to make the strain on the back a bit more.
“Hopefully, he recovers good and gets to playing good, and he'll be ready for next week.”