Tiger Woods Misses Cut at PGA Championship

Getty Images via Zimbio

Getty Images via Zimbio

For just the fourth time in his storied 18-year career, Tiger Woods has missed the cut at a major. Once again citing back pain, he looked like a shell of his old self on the Valhalla course at the PGA Championship this week.

Playing in just his fourth tournament since undergoing back surgery in late March, Woods shot two successive 3-over 74, missing the cut and mercifully putting an end to his summer of misery.

Woods returned to the course ahead of schedule for the Quicken Loans National in June, only to turn in one of the worst performances of his career. Before being eliminated he made five bogeys and a double bogey in the second round.

Although he made it to weekend play at the British Open last month after a strong start, Woods fell apart late and ultimately had his worst 72-hole showing ever in a major. Last week he withdrew on the final day of the World Golf Championship at Firestone, in which he was well out of contention, once again citing back pain.

Woods’ status for the PGA Championship was in doubt after pulling out of Firestone, but he showed up claiming to be healthy and decided to play. It was clear early on that his struggles had followed him to Louisville, having essentially shot himself out of contention on the front nine.

He was 4-over 39 halfway through the first round, with an ugly bogey and an uglier double bogey essentially setting the stage for the rest of his run. The cut was 1 over at Valhalla and Woods didn’t even come close.

At this point, Woods’ season is effectively over. It would have taken a win this weekend to qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs, and it’s hard to imagine Ryder Cup captain Tom Watson will choose him as one of the wild-cards for the U.S. Ryder Cup team.

Which is probably for the best. Woods, whose presence would only be a distraction, hasn’t doesn’t anything this year to suggest he belongs on that team.

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