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A little over 24 hours on from his WD at the Genesis Invitational, Tiger Woods has revealed what caused his latest PGA Tour comeback to end prematurely.

Making his first start of the season and just his third since he withdrew from The Masters last April, the 15-time major champ managed only six holes of his second round at Riviera Country Club before being driven off the course in a buggy.

Woods was pictured with his head in his hands as the cart made its way towards the clubhouse, prompting many to speculate that he had suffered a recurrence of one of the many physical ailments that has limited him to only six official starts since his 2021 car crash.

However, it was later suggested that illness rather than injury had forced him to withdraw and, in a social media post on Saturday evening (UK time), Woods confirmed that was indeed the cause.

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“I would like to confirm that I had to withdraw from @thegenesisinv due to illness, which we now know is influenza,” said Woods.

“I am resting and feeling better. Good luck to the players this weekend. I’m disappointed to not be there and want to thank @GenesisUSA and all the fans for the support.”

Whilst a disappointing start to the year, the news that he has not suffered an injury will come as a huge relief to Woods’ huge legion of fans.

The Genesis Invitational marked his first official PGA Tour start since his WD from The Masters ten months ago. He subsequently underwent ankle surgery, prompting an extended spell on the sidelines, before returning to competition at the Hero World Challenge in December.

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He finished 18th in the 20-player field, before taeming-up with son Charlie at the PNC Championship a fortnight later.

During the Hero World Challenge, Woods expressed his hope of being able to play one event per month this year.

Assuming he is fit and able, it is possible that his next start could come in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, taking place at Bay Hill in Florida from March 7-10. Woods is an eight-time winner of that particular event but hasn’t featured there since the 2016/17 PGA Tour season.

The PLAYERS Championship at TPC Sawgrass the following week is another contender for his next start.

author headshot

Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

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