How it happened: Tiger makes the cut; McIlroy WDs
Friday, March 1, 2013
PHOTOS: Rory McIlroy at Honda Classic (2nd round)
Check out images of Rory McIlroy during and after he withdrew from the Honda Classic on Friday.
Hate To Be Rude: Brian Gay
It was a bizarre day at PGA National.
The World No. 1 literally walked off the course. The World No. 2 had to fight just to stick around for the weekend.
Rory McIlroy withdrew after going 7 over through eight holes in the morning (Read our full story on McIlroy's shocking departure here), while Tiger Woods fired an even-par 70 for the second consecutive day to make the cut on the number.
Woods trails leader Luke Guthrie by nine shots after Guthrie fired a 7-under 63 on Friday.
See how the day unfolded:
• • •
Update #13: 6:10 p.m. EST
Graham DeLaet birdie No. 8, his 17th hole of the day, to get to 7 under par for the tournament after firing a 2-under 68 in the second round. DeLaet now sits two shots back of the leader heading into the weekend.
• • •
Update #12: 6:01 p.m. EST
Sang-Moon Bae, who had to birdie the 18th in order to make the cut, can not make his putt and settles for par. He is 1 over for the tournament and will miss the cut.
• • •
Update #11: 5:30 p.m. EST
Justin Rose shot a second-round bogey-free 4-under 68. Rose is 6 under for the tournament, just three shots back of leader Luke Guthrie.
First round leader Camilo Villegas shot a second round 7-over 77, and it looks like he'll miss the cut as he is 1 over par for the tournament. The cut line is even par.
• • •
Hole No. 18, Par 5, 604 yards
Tiger picked the right time for his first sand save of the week, especially at the difficult par-3 17th.
• Hole wrap-up: Needing only par, Tiger still takes driver and finds a fairway bunker on the left side. Hits the lip and funnels back down. From just over 210 yards, Tiger attempts to get after the green and goes left, hitting a fan in the gallery and bounding to the other side of the cart path. Has three shots to get down. Tiger hits a solid chip that runs out to about 25 feet behind the hole. Tiger narrowly misses his birdie putt, but taps in for par and will stick around for the weekend.
Thru 18: Even (Even for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 17, Par 3, 190 yards
That was another big par save for Tiger, who now faces a par-3 and a par-5 closing out his round. He remains at even par, which is currently the cut line.
• Hole wrap-up: Tiger can't flirt with the right (water), so he keeps it left and finds a greenside bunker. Must have an up-and-down here. An incredible sand shot from Tiger stops 2 feet short of the cup and he picks up a par. He was 0-for-5 on sand saves for the week.
Thru 17: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Charles Howell III is in with a second consecutive 3-under 67 to sit T-4 at 6 under.
• • •
Hole No. 16, Par 4, 434 yards
That birdie miss on 15 might come back to haunt Tiger if he stumbles at all over the final three holes. He has no room for error by sitting on the cut line.
• Hole wrap-up: Tiger yells at his ball to cut immediately, but it doesn't. He does find a fairway bunker with a clean lie. Tiger's second shot comes up short of the green in the left fringe. He putts from the fringe and runs it past the hole by about 5 feet. A must-make at this point. He does make to stay at even par.
Thru 16: Even (Even for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 15, Par 3, 188 yards
It has been a roller-coaster day for Tiger, as that birdie puts him back into weekend play.
• Hole wrap-up: A very nice tee ball from Tiger here, getting it all the way back to the back-left pin and will have about 10 feet for birdie. But he can't get it to fall, as the ball cuts under the hole and he settles for a disappointing par. Could be costly over the final three holes.
Thru 15: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Boo Weekley finishes his round with a birdie to card a 3-under 67 and is solo third at 7 under.
• • •
Hole No. 14, Par 4, 465 yards
Tiger made a mess of No. 13, compounding each mistake with another. It could cost him a spot on the weekend. He'll need a birdie on one of his final five holes to play Saturday and Sunday.
• Off the tee: Driver is back in hand and Tiger hammers it into the fairway. It's go time for Tiger now. His second shot is magnificent, coming to rest about 5 feet left of the cup. He drains it and is now back to being a weekend warrior. The Bear Trap awaits . . .
Thru 14: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Justin Rose and Charles Howell III have joined Lee Westwood, Doug LaBelle II, Geoff Ogilvy and Boo Weekley at 6 under. Rose is bogey-free, opening with three consecutive birdies and added another at No. 12.
• • •
Hole No. 13, Par 4, 388 yards
That's three consecutive pars to start the back-nine for Tiger. He likely needs another birdie before he gets to the Bear Trap at No. 15.
• Hole wrap-up: Another long iron for Tiger here, and he stares it down, asking for it to get a bit right, but it doesn't and it finds a fairway bunker. He has a lip to deal with and has to get it up quick, causing him to come up short of the green and finding another bunker. Scrambling a bit at this point. Tiger has to hack it out of the sand after the ball is basically buried, sending it off the back of the green. Now will do good to save bogey. His pitch from the back doesn't reach the green, his putt from the fringe hits the left side of the cup and he picks up a double bogey to fall outside the cut line.
Thru 13: 1 over (1 over for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 12, Par 4, 417 yards
• Hole wrap-up: Tiger tries to play it safe with a fairway metal, but pulls it left and into the deeper rough. His second shot has eyes for the green, but hooks a bit left and finds more rough and lays down deep. But, he is able to get up-and-down after a nice chip gives him a 3-foot putt.
Thru 12: 1 under (1 under for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Charl Schwartzel is enjoying a nice round, burying a 20-footer at No. 10 to move to 4 under on his round and 4 under overall.
• • •
Hole No. 11, Par 4, 479 yards
That was a big par save for Tiger, allowing him to stay in red figures and press toward the leader.
• Hole wrap-up: Less than driver here for Tiger, but he finds the right side of the fairway, with a little twirl of the club as well. He isn't happy with his second shot, although he finds the green and will have 40 feet for birdie. A nice two-putt from Tiger here, really giving the birdie roll a real chance, settling about 18 inches under the hole.
Thru 11: 1 under (1 under for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Graham DeLaet and Branden Grace have both joined Boo Weekley at 7 under with birdies. They are two back of leader Luke Guthrie.
• • •
Hole No. 10, Par 4, 525 yards
An outward, 1-under 34 for Tiger that allows him to move off the projected cut line and into the red. He had three birdies and two bogeys on the front.
• Hole wrap-up: Driver here at the long par-4 and Tiger pushes it right, leaving himself a long second shot ahead. He has to lay up to the fairway, plays his third to about 10 feet for a par save. He does make the par putt to stay at 1 under.
Thru 10: 1 under (1 under for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Boo Weekley has moved into solo third with a birdie at No. 3 and is now 7 under for the tournament.
• • •
Hole No. 9, Par 4, 421 yards
Two errant tee balls are what have cost Tiger a chance to be making a run versus trying to simply grind to just make the cut. Tiger is likely the best "grinder" in the history of the game, which is why he has missed so few cuts. But two in two months could sound alarms, regardless of his win at Torrey Pines.
• Hole wrap-up: Another iron finds the fairway for Tiger, leaving himself a mid-iron into the green. He gets his approach to 30 feet and then buries the birdie bomb to get back to red figures at the turn.
Thru 9: 1 under (1 under for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 8, Par 4, 455 yards
Could we be without the World Nos. 1 and 2 again this weekend? With McIlroy already out, it's on Tiger to stick around. Those back-to-back bogeys have put him in a tough spot, as he cannot drop any more.
• Hole wrap-up: Can't use driver here, so Tiger lays up. Those mid-irons need to get him close from here on out. He gets his approach within birdie distance - 10 feet - but can't convert and stays at even. Definitely failing to take advantage of the easier nine holes.
Thru 8: Even (Even for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 7, Par 3, 226 yards
That was an eventful three-hole stretch for Tiger, going birdie-birdie-bogey. He is currently T-42, two shots clear of the cut line and eight shots behind leader Luke Guthrie.
• Hole wrap-up: Another poor tee shot from Tiger here, as he gets caught in a greenside bunker on the right. He can't get up-and-down and settles for a second consecutive bogey and is back on the cut line.
Thru 7: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Of the top eight on the leaderboard, only two are currently on the course (Boo Weekley and Branden Grace at 6 under).
• • •
Hole No. 6, Par 4, 488 yards
Those two birdies should give Tiger some room to take chances, as he still has tons of ground to gain on leader Luke Guthrie.
• Hole wrap-up: Uh-oh. Tiger overcooks his driver left and finds the water, where he'll have to take a drop. Could be a costly mistake after two beautiful holes in a row. He has to drop from well back, lays up and hits his fourth shot to 6 feet. He makes the putt to save bogey.
Thru 6: 1 under (1 under for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 5, Par 3, 217 yards
The first par-3 of the day for Tiger, coming off his first birdie of the day as well. With that birdie, Tiger moved up to T-41.
• Hole wrap-up: Tiger is feeling this tee ball, getting it to just outside of 5 feet for a chance for a second consecutive birdie. He converts and now is making his way up the long leaderboard.
Thru 5: 2 under (2 under for tournament)
• • •
Hole No. 4, Par 4, 376 yards
The second short par-4 of the opening four holes, and that par at No. 3 will necessitate Tiger taking advantage of one of these par-4s to give himself some breathing room.
• Hole wrap-up: Another fairway hit for Tiger (3-of-4 today) and he hits his fourth green in regulation, leaving himself 15 feet for birdie. He drains this one, his first make from over 15 feet and he is in red figures for the first time in the tournament.
Thru 4: 1 under (1 under for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Luke Guthrie polishes off a bogey-free, 7-under 63 to take the clubhouse lead at 9 under, one shot clear of Michael Thompson.
• • •
Hole No. 3, Par 5, 538 yards
There will be 14 holes in between par-5s for Tiger, so he needs to take advantage of this first one to get himself going and get into the red for the first time in the tournament.
• Hole wrap-up: Tiger pounds a driver again, with the ball running into the rough, near the second cut. Tiger sends his second shot into a greenside bunker, blasts his third shot to about 8 feet, but can't convert on the birdie putt. Missed opportunity there as Tiger stays on the cut line.
Thru 3: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Justin Rose has started his second round on fire, picking up birdie at Nos. 1 and 2 to move to 4 under. Scott Stallings likely played himself into the weekend with a 4-under 66 that got him back to level-par for the tournament.
• • •
Hole No. 2, Par 4, 464 yards
While making the cut is on the mind of most, Tiger knows he needs to go low to get back in this tournament. He is nine shots back of current leader Luke Guthrie.
• Hole wrap-up: First driver of the day, hitting the left side of the fairway. Bombed it. He hits another green (2-for-2), leaving himself a mid-range birdie putt again. But, a two-putt par ensues.
Thru 2: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Luke Guthrie adds his sixth and seventh birdies of the day - against no bogeys - and is now in the lead by one with two holes to play.
• • •
Hole No. 1, Par 4, 365 yards
Tiger is going with the darker clothes today in south Florida, with navy pants and a navy sweater, with a white polo peaking through. Tiger will start on the easier nine today.
• Hole wrap-up: Tiger starts with an iron off the first tee and smacks it up the left side of the fairway. A day after hitting 14 greens, Tiger starts by hitting another, but leaves it well short of the cup. A two-putt leads to an opening par.
Thru 1: Even (Even for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Lee Westwood fires a 2-under 68 (three birdies, one bogey) to get to 6 under, two shots back of Michael Thompson.
• • •
Update #10: 12:01 p.m. EST
The cut line is moving around a bit, with it moving to even par for the moment. With the second half of the field yet to tee off, that number promises to move a bit more. As of right now, overnight leader Camilo Villegas would miss the cut after a 7-over 77.
• • •
Update #9: 11:57 a.m. EST
Luke Guthrie adds another birdie to his bogey-free card at the par-5 3rd to move to 7 under overall and 5 under on the day. Guthrie has made four of six cuts this season, finishing T-27 or better in those four weekends.
• • •
Update #8: 11:31 p.m. EST
Overnight leader Camilo Villegas carded a 7-over 77 to fall back to 1 over overall and is currently just inside the cut line.
• • •
Update #7: 11:24 p.m. EST
Rookie Luke Guthrie is working on a bogey-free round, moving to 6 under overall behind four birdies through 10 holes and is two shots back of leader Michael Thompson, who carded a 5-under 65 on Friday.
• • •
Update #6: 11:17 p.m. EST
Michael Thompson, playing his final hole of the day, now has a two-shot lead after Geoff Ogilvy's picks up his first bogey of the day at the par-4 13th hole. Ogilvy and Lee Westwood are both at 6 under, while there are six players at 5 under, including Graeme McDowell.
• • •
Update #5: 11:04 p.m. EST
"I sincerely apologize the The Honda Classic and PGA Tour for my sudden withdrawal. I have been suffering with a sore wisdom tooth, which is due to come out in the near future. It began bothering me again last night, so I relieved it with Advil. It was very painful again this morning, and I was simply unable to concentrate. It was really bothering me and had begun to affect my playing partners. I came here with every intention of defending my Honda Classic title. Even though the results haven't revealed it, I really felt like I was rounding a corner. This is one of my favorite tournaments of the year and I regret having to make the decision to withdraw, but it was one I had to make."
• • •
Update #4: 10:53 p.m. EST
According to the PGA Tour Twitter feed, Rory McIlroy withdrew from the Honda Classic due to severe wisdom tooth pain that is making it hard for him to concentrate.
• • •
Update #3: 10:51 p.m. EST
Michael Thompson is on fire right now, picking up his third birdie in four holes at No. 16 to move to 5 under on his round and 8 under overall, now one shot clear of Geoff Ogilvy and two ahead of Lee Westwood.
Thompson was the 18-hole leader at the 2012 U.S. Open.
• • •
Update #2: 10:38 p.m. EST
While much of the attention is now away from the course with McIlroy's departure, Michael Thompson and Geoff Ogilvy now share the lead at 7 under, while Lee Westwood is in solo third, one shot back.
• • •
Update #1: 10:35 p.m. EST
One side effect of McIlroy's surprising withdrawal is that he might be in violation of Tour policy. There are rules on withdrawing, which states the following:
"During a round, a player may withdraw because of injury or other disability which requires medical attention, or serious personal emergency. The player shall notify the PGA TOUR Tournament Director or a PGA TOUR Rules Official of his reason for withdrawal, and within a period of 14days submit written evidence supporting such reason to the Commissioner."
In a quick post-round interview, McIlroy didn't claim to be injured. Stay tuned for more details.
• • •
No. 18, Par 5, 604 yards
Without completing the hole, Rory McIlroy picks up his ball and withdraws after a dismal first eight holes in his second round, going 7 over on the day with two bogeys, a double and a triple. On 18, McIlroy hit his approach into the water, dropped a ball, hit again and then simply walked to his car.
The defending champion came into the tournament with a 75 as his best score of the year, a missed cut and an elimination in the first round of WGC-Accenture Match Play. His 70 on Thursday kept him inside the cut line, but a double at No. 11 on Friday morning seemed to send him into a tailspin.
• Elsewhere on the course: Geoff Ogilvy (4 under on the day) and Doug LaBelle II have joined Robert Streb and Brian Stuard at 6 under in a four-way tie for the lead.
• • •
No. 17, Par 3, 190 yards
Making the cut at this point is going to take an epic final 11 holes, so now McIlroy might just work on parts of his game down the stretch, knowing that his next competitive round is next Thursday at the WGC-Cadillac.
• Hole wrap-up: While McIlroy still has two par-5s in front of him, the discussion will now shift to whether he can avoid shooting 80 after another bogey on No. 17 to move to 7 over on the day.
Thru 8: 7 over (7 over for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Robert Streb and Brian Stuard have both moved to 6 under to share the lead. Stuard birdied both Nos. 3 and 4 to vault up the leaderboard, while Streb birdied No. 4.
• • •
No. 16, Par 4, 434 yards
While McIlroy isn't the only one going backward today, he is the only defending champion doing so. The back-nine is much tougher and McIlroy has not reached a par-5 just yet (Nos. 18 and 3), so he is going to need to take advantage of his scoring holes to inch back to the cut line.
• Hole wrap-up: The Bear Trap has claimed another casualty in McIlroy, as the World No. 1 picks up a triple bogey at No. 16 to move to T-137 in the field, with only four players behind him. That is a bogey, double and triple through seven holes for McIlroy.
Thru 7: 6 over (6 over for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Michael Thompson joins the leaders at 5 under with birdies at Nos. 8 and 9. He is in a four-way tie after Lee Westwood drops his first shot of the day with a bogey at the par-3 15th to fall back to 4 under. Geoff Ogilvy, who has struggled mightily this season with four missed cuts in five tries, is 2 under through five holes today and has also moved to 4 under overall.
• • •
No. 15, Par 3, 179 yards
• Hole wrap-up: A second consecutive par for McIlroy, using a nice two-putt at his first par-3 of the day. He has two tough holes in front of him to complete the Bear Trap.
Thru 6: 3 over (3 over for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Talk about a colorful card, John Huh has started his second round in miserable fashion. Through the first six holes on the front he went par-bogey-birdie-par-bogey-triple. The defending PGA Tour Rookie of the Year has moved from red numbers and inside the cut line to T-112. Meanwhile, Camilo Villegas is struggling mightily, sitting at 5 over for the day through eight holes behind three bogeys and a double. He has dropped out of the lead and back to T-39.
• • •
No. 14, Par 4, 465 yards
• Hole wrap-up: Another par here, but that isn't going to cut it for McIlroy at this point. Some birdie putts need to start dropping and in a hurry. Not just to make the cut, but also to stay within a great round of being in contention. Currently, he is eight shots off the lead in a tie for 112th.
Thru 5: 3 over (3 over for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Lee Westwood has jumped into a five-way tie for the lead at 5 under with Robert Streb, Ben Kohles, Branden Grace and Graham DeLaet. Westwood birdied No. 13.
• • •
No. 13, Par 4, 388 yards
• Hole wrap-up: McIlroy is going the wrong direction, moving to 3 over on his round with a bogey at one of the three par-4s under 400 yards.
Thru 4: 3 over (3 over for tournament)
• • •
No. 12, Par 4, 427 yards
• Hole wrap-up: A solid par after that disastrous double at No. 11. Stops the bleeding a bit.
Thru 3: 2 over (2 over for tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Wow, the par-4 11th is eating the field alive today, as Rickie Fowler also doubles the hole to fall back to 3 under. Villegas and McIlroy suffered the same fate.
• • •
No. 11, Par 4, 479 yards
• Hole wrap-up: No. 11 garners another victim, as McIlroy doubles the hole, the same as Camilo Villegas about 20 minutes earlier. Ouch. McIlroy is now outside the projected cut line.
Thru 2: 2 over (2 over for tournament)
• • •
No. 10, Par 4, 525 yards
McIlroy faces the same start as Tiger Woods did on Thursday - beginning his day at the monster par 4.
• Hole wrap-up: A par to open the day for the World No. 1. Nothing spectacular, everything in regulation.
Thru 1: Even (Even on tournament)
• Elsewhere on the course: Overnight leader Camilo Villegas starts his morning with a bogey at No. 10 and then a double bogey at No. 11 to fall back to 3 under overall.
• • •
• TEE TIMES: Here are the second-round tee times and pairings for the Honda Classic at PGA National's Champion Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Pairings.
• TRACKER: Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy didn't exactly light up PGA National on Thursday in the opening round of the Honda Classic. Both players fired even-par 70s and have work to do on Friday. See how it all unfolded.
• 5 THINGS: Camilo Villegas may not have full status on the PGA Tour, but he holds the first-round lead at the Honda Classic. Villegas shot 64 Thursday at PGA National’s Champion Course. 5 Things to know after Thursday's first round.
• BOUNCING BACK: On Thursday, rookie Robert Streb birdied No. 9 at PGA National near dusk to close out a solid first round -- and exorcise the demons of a wayward No. 9 at sunset while missing the cut at Riviera. Story.
• GRINDING IT OUT: Despite a closing bogey that led to an even-par 70, Rory McIlroy says that his game is "getting there." On a wet and soggy day at PGA National, even par was about what McIlroy deserved to shoot. Story.
• CLIMBING THE LADDER: Branden Grace, who fired a 5-under 65 on Thursday at the Honda Classic to take a share of the early lead, has moved up 241 spots in the Official World Golf Rankings in the past 15 months. Story.
• NICE START: Boo Weekley's putting kept pace with his trademark shotmaking to push him near the top of the leaderboard Thursday at the Honda Classic. Story.
• SOLID START: Tiger Woods, who closed last year’s Honda Classic with a 62 that left him two shots behind Rory McIlroy, opened this year’s Honda with an even-par 70 that included 14 pars. Woods missed just four greens and five fairways. Story.
PHOTOS: Honda Classic (Wednesday)
Images from the practice round at the Honda Classic, to be played at PGA National's Champion Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
• • •
• TEE TIMES: Here are the first-round tee times and pairings for the Honda Classic at PGA National's Champion Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Pairings.
• FINDING HIS WAY: Vaughn Taylor, who has made less than $1 million in the past two seasons combined, hasn't cracked the top 10 since a T-5 at The Barclays in August 2010. He says his game is "coming around." Story.
• 5 THINGS: One of the top open events on the PGA Tour schedule is this week with the Honda Classic. Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy highlight a strong field at the first event of the Florida Swing. 5 Things to know before the start of the tournament. Story.
• 'EVERYTHING'S THERE:' It’s like chalk and cheese. That’s how Rory McIlroy, the world's top-ranked golfer, explained the recent problem with his game. Through two events this year, McIlroy has shown nothing close to his 2012 form. Story.