Tiger Woods is going home early and he is leaving the Atlanta Athletic Club at the lowest point of his golfing career.
Tiger has missed the cut from the PGA Championship after shooting a 3-over-par 73 today. It's just the third time this happened at a major in his professional career.
Woods has been just a shadow of his former self after battling injuries and trying to rebuild his golf swing. He really struggled on his way to finishing three-over-par 73 for a 10-over total of 150 these past two days.
Yesterday he was tied for the lead at three-under after five holes of his first round. Then it all unraveled as he was 13-over for his last 31 holes.
In his round today he bogeyed the fifth and seventh holes before birdying eight and nine. He exited the front nine at even for the round.
After a par on 10, it all came down for Tiger on the par-4 11th. He drove into a bunker and then hit his second shot into a green-side bunker, landing on the far up-slope.
Then he had to take an awkward stance with the ball well below his feet and his shot rolled across the green, down a little slope and into the pond behind the flag.
After taking a drop, he pitched up and made the putt for a double-bogey, putting him at nine-over and at this point it was fair to say he was done for the tournament.
For the record, he also double-bogeyed the 12th—his fifth double in two rounds.
Tiger said afterwards:
''I hit 20 bunkers in two days. I had four or five water balls, that's not going to add up to a very good score.''
Correction Mr. Woods, the total tally was 22 bunkers—11 from the tee, 11 green side—and four that found the water.
Before today I would say his worst moment was last year after the Bridgestone Invitational played at the Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio. That is a course where he had won seven times.
He finished in a tie for 78th place—second-to-last—at 18-over par, his worst result since he finished 60th at the Greater Milwaukee Open in 1996 in his debut as a professional.
He blamed his knee then, but it was officially his worst four-round result as a professional golfer. He can’t blame his knee now.
He had missed the cut previously in a major at the 2009 British Open and the 2006 US open. He missed the 1996 Masters, but he was still an amateur.
In terms of scoring, this was not as bad as the 2006 US Open where he shot 12-over and missed the cut by three shots. But back then he was returning after a six-week break and was still grieving his father's death.
He was also the top player in the world and had a streak of 39 straight cuts made at a major. He is now ranked 30 and losing more ground.
It can be argued that this is only his second event after being sidelined for three months with injuries. But he was healthy and had the desire to play.
Tiger’s former reputation is almost totally dismantled and the inquiring minds will now be searching for his answers. Whether it is his new swing, new move or new look. Whatever it is, he better find an answer fast if he is ever to contend again.
This is definitely his worst moment as a golfer.