How it happened: Tiger, McIlroy miss cut

Rory McIlroy (left) and Tiger Woods both struggled with accuracy off the tee and hitting greens in regulation.

Rory McIlroy (left) and Tiger Woods both struggled with accuracy off the tee and hitting greens in regulation.

ABU DHABI -- Well, that wasn't the way Rory McIlroy wanted to start 2013.

And it was an even more bizarre start for Tiger Woods.

Woods had to take a two-shot penalty that was not made public until after the round due to an illegal drop that he took out of a sandy structure on No. 5. Subsequently, the 1-over 71 that he thought he carded became a 3-over 73 and Woods missed the cut by a shot.

Woods called over Martin Kaymer when his ball found a bush on the right of the fairway, both players agreed that the ball was embedded and that he'd get a free drop. It was determined that it was a sand area, and he could not take the drop.

"Evidently, I broke a rule," said Woods. According to reports, Tiger was told on the 11th hole that he might be incurring the penalty, but that it would be confirmed at the end of the round.

According to reports, when signing his card, he was asked if he wanted to go out to the scene, but Woods asked officials if they thought he was in violation, they said yes and he took the penalty.

The penalty was not phoned in, as it came from a pair of fans on the course, according to Euro Tour senior referee Andy McFee.

"A couple of spectators passing by the referee asked 'Why did Tiger get a drop there?'" said McFee. "We didn't know. We thought maybe the embedded ball rule.

"(But the) embedded ball rule does not apply in that area. (It is) closely-mown area only."

Kaymer felt bad for Woods after finding out about the penalty.

"It's never nice. He was fighting back. He was playing very well coming in," said Kaymer.

Did they ever talk about bringing in an official?

"No, it was embedded," said Kaymer. "That's a free drop."

While McIlroy wasn't involved in looking at the ball, he knows all about the impact that the penalty will have on the tournament.

"I didn't know the rule either. Tough for Tiger. Tough for the tournament," said McIlroy.

McIlroy fired his second consecutive 3-over 75, picking up only two birdies.

Woods started his round by going 4 over through his first five holes, but three consecutive birdies on the back-nine allowed him to claw his way back into the tournament. A bogey at No. 17 ended up costing him a spot for the weekend.

Woods had never missed a cut in 21 regular European Tour events.

McIlroy, currently T-98, looked to be getting going at the turn with birdies at Nos. 8 and 9, but a bad bogey on the par-5 10th and another at No. 14 ended the Northern Irisman's hopes of making the weekend.

"A bit disappointing. But it is what it is," said McIlroy, who switched putters overnight, saying that his Friday putter provided more weight for the slow greens.

Here is how it all unfolded:

• • •

No. 18, Par 5, 567 yards

That's six bogeys and five birdies for Tiger on the day, while McIlroy has five bogeys and two birdies. While McIlroy is likely out for the weekend, a birdie could salvage an even-par round for Tiger.

Off the tee: McIlroy has to holler "Fore left!" right after impact, and his ball might not be findable, as he clears the gallery. Tiger hammers a drive up the left side that finds the rough and he might have tree problems in his backswing.

Second shot: McIlroy takes fairway metal on a fairly blind shot and sends it way right of his target. Meanwhile, Tiger has no choice but to lay up and he plays a nice shot up the right side of the fairway.

Third shot: A nice shot from McIlroy here, putting his approach about 10 feet left of the flag. Tiger also hits a nice one, leaving it about 15 feet under the hole. He could use this putt to get back to where he started the day.

On the green: Tiger gives it a nice run, but the ball sits on the lip and he settles for a closing par, but he'll make the cut and stick around for the weekend. McIlroy finishes his round with a two-putt par. Update: Tiger received a two-stroke penalty for a free drop he took on No. 5 that pushed him to a 3-over 73.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament); McIlroy, 3 over (6 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 17, Par 4, 483 yards

That's three consecutive birdies for Tiger and he finds himself tied for 41st at the moment.

Off the tee: Yipes. Tiger's hands come off his club and he goes way left of the fairway. Will be interesting to see if it is playable. Not what he needed after building momentum. McIlroy finds the fairway despite looking like he hated his tee shot.

Approach shot: Tiger gets a bit fortunate, as his tee ball is in an open area and playable, and he just punches it up the fairway. McIlroy hits a great second shot to about 18 feet under the hole.

Third shot: From the rough on the right, Tiger muscles it to the green, but leaves himself 25 feet to save par.

On the green: Tiger gets close, but leaves it about 3 inches to the right of the cup and he drops a shot. Still within the cut line with a par 5 to go. McIlroy gives his birdie putt a good run, but it slides by on the left and he settles for par.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 1 over (1 over for tournament); McIlroy, 3 over (6 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 16, Par 4, 475 yards

That birdie at No. 15 is a nice insurance one for Tiger, giving himself some breathing room around the cut line.

Off the tee: With driver in hand, Tiger goes well left of the fairway, but does find sand. It will be a long second shot for Tiger. McIlroy hammers his drive into the wind and find the left side of the fairway. Perfect tee ball.

Approach shot: Poor second ball from McIlroy, finding a greenside bunker at the front of the green. Waste of a great drive. Tiger hits a fantastic shot into the green, leaving himself about 15 feet from behind the hole for birdie.

Around the green: Great bunker shot from McIlroy, who leaves it about 6 inches short of the cup.

On the green: McIlroy taps in for a par. Moments later, Tiger buries yet another birdie putt and is now creeping back toward overall red numbers. Great turnaround on the back nine for Woods.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, Even (Even for tournament); McIlroy, 3 over (6 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 15, Par 3, 177 yards

Tiger moves to a par 3 that he birdied on Thursday, making a lengthy putt from the fringe. McIlroy will need to birdie out to make the cut, while Tiger likely just needs to maintain where he is.

Off the tee: Another fantastic tee ball from Tiger here, hitting his seventh green of the day and will have about 12 feet for another birdie. McIlroy also holds the green and will have about 15 feet for birdie.

On the green: McIlroy can't get his birdie try to fall, powering it past on the left, but he saves par. Tiger buries another mid-range birdie putt to give himself some breathing room.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 1 over (1 over for tournament); McIlroy, 3 over (6 over)

• • •

No. 14, Par 4, 490 yards

The group moves to the longest par 4 on the course, and now McIlroy needs three birdies over five holes to have a shot at the weekend. At this moment, Woods just needs one birdie, or some help from the field.

Off the tee: With fairway metal, McIlroy pushes his tee ball into the rough on the right. Tiger also uses fairway metal, but finds the middle of the fairway. He can't afford anymore bogeys at this point.

Approach shot: With 235 yards left, Tiger stares down his shot, which is a nice one that settles about 18 feet right of the hole. Beautiful shot. Meanwhile, McIlroy has to hack out of the rough and simply advance it up the left side of the fairway.

Around the green: A nice chip shot from McIlroy leaves him about 6 feet to save par. A bogey would be deadly.

On the green: Tiger buries his birdie putt to get inside the current cut line. Nice hole there, despite being conservative off the tee. Moments later, McIlroy misses his par putt and he drops four shots back of the cut line.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 2 over (2 over for tournament); McIlroy, 3 over (6 over)

• • •

No. 13, Par 4, 414 yards

The cut line is holding steady at 2 over, although if four players drop back to 3 over (and there are plenty of players on the course), that line could move to 3 over.

Off the tee: With fairway metal, Tiger gets a bit unlucky and the ball kicks right and into the rough. McIlroy hits the fairway and will likely need at least three birdies over his final six holes to make the cut.

Approach shot: Tiger misses another green, although this one just comes up about 4 feet short of the green. Should be able to get up-and-down. McIlroy hits the green, but is about 25 feet right of the pin.

Around the green: Putting from just off the green and about 60 feet away, Tiger hits a really nice putt that stops about 2 feet in front of the cup.

On the green: McIlroy's putt gets to the hole, but slides by on the left and he two-putts for a par. Tiger also knocks his in for par.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament); McIlroy, 2 over (5 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 12, Par 3, 186 yards

That's five bogeys and two birdies for Tiger on Friday. He had five bogeys in all four rounds at Abu Dhabi in 2012.

Off the tee: Another poor result for McIlroy, who finds a greenside bunker well to the right of the hole. Tiger is safely on the green, about 25 feet left of the hole. Solid shot.

Around the green: McIlroy gets it out clean, but sends it about 10 feet past the hole. He'll have that for par.

On the green: Tiger's pace is perfect, but is settles 3 inches to the left of the hole and he settles for a par. McIlroy does make his 10-footer to save par.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament); McIlroy, 2 over (5 over)

• • •

No. 11, Par 4, 417 yards

Tiger has taken advantage of the last two par-5s on the course to get back inside the cut line.

Off the tee: While it doesn't find trouble, Tiger pops up his drive a bit and is well back in the fairway. McIlroy uses 3-wood and finds the left rough. He has missed 5 of 9 fairways today.

Approach shot: After hitting four greens in a row, Tiger sends this one a bit long and just off the back. One club too much there for Woods. McIlroy does stay on the green, leaving himself about 20 feet from under the hole for birdie.

Around the green: Tiger pops this one up a bit too much, with the ball not having enough speed and it comes up 10 feet short of the cup. He needs to make this one.

On the green: But Tiger doesn't. He plays too much break from the left and he drops a shot. McIlroy comes up short on his birdie attempt and his body language almost looks defeated. He does make par, however.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament); McIlroy, 2 over (5 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 10, Par 5, 582 yards

A day after a 2-over 38 on the front-nine, Tiger cards a 3-over 39 on Friday. McIlroy makes the turn in 1-over 37. Tiger had 15 putts, three greens in regulation and hit only 3 of 7 fairways.

Off the tee: Tiger decides to take driver off the tee and splits the fairway. A gutsy move from a guy that needs to make a move. McIlroy goes well left off the tee and into the gallery.

Second shot: With just over 260 yards left into the green, Tiger leaves it just short of the green, but will have a nice look at an eagle chip. McIlroy hits a poor second shot, going from sand to sand, this time right on the lip of a fairway bunker. He looks on in disbelief.

Third shot: Another poor shot from McIlroy, having to just blast out and he finds the long rough, still 50 yards from the green.

Fourth shot: McIlroy has to hack at it and gets it out, but it finds a greenside bunker.

Around the green: Tiger, playing his third shot, chips it to about 4 feet under the hole for a great look at birdie. A great bunker shot by McIlroy leaves him less than a foot for bogey.

On the green: McIlroy does tap in, but drops another shot and kills the momentum of back-to-back birdies to close the front nine. Tiger does knock his birdie putt in, moving him back inside the current cut line.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 2 over (2 over for tournament) ; McIlroy, 2 over (5 over)

• • •

No. 9, Par 4, 456 yards

Great third shots finally got both McIlroy and Tiger headed in the right direction.

Off the tee: Tiger overcooks his driver a bit, but gets a bit lucky with the ball coming to rest just right of the water. Meanwhile, McIlroy pushes his drive to the right and is also flirting with the water.

Approach shot: A third green in regulation in a row for Tiger (he missed first six), hitting a nice shot to about 25 feet under the hole. McIlroy, meanwhile, gets very lucky to hang up just at the top of the rocks on the right, but has to hit from inside the hazard line and gets it up to the green, but sitting on the fringe, about 40 feet to the right of the hole.

Around the green: McIlroy might be heating up, chipping in for a second consecutive birdie. Some smiles for the first time today.

On the green: Tiger finds the right line, but leaves it 18 inches short and settles for par.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament) ; McIlroy, 1 over (4 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 8, Par 5, 597 yards

That birdie miss at No. 7 could hurt Tiger in his quest to get inside the cut line. McIlroy is now T-102 and is birdie-less over his last 14 holes.

Off the tee: Tiger plays a really nice fade into the middle of the fairway and might be able to get after the green, or at least think about it. McIlroy finds the left rough and won't have that thought process.

Second shot: Tiger takes a rip at it, but finds a greenside bunker and will have a delicate sand shot for his third. McIlroy just advances his ball up the left side of the fairway after his tee ball found the long stuff.

Third shot: Fantastic shot for McIlroy, hitting it past the flag and spinning it back to about a foot. Tiger also plays a great shot, lofting his sand shot high into the air and the ball settles 3 feet behind the hole.

On the green: McIlroy taps in for his first birdie of the day, while Tiger does the same.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament); McIlroy, 2 over (5 over)

• • •

No. 7, Par 3, 200 yards

Tiger has yet to hit a green in regulation Friday, McIlroy hasn't made a birdie in 13 holes and the duo has six bogeys through six holes today. The cut line is hovering at 2 over, so both players have work to do to play the weekend. Woods has missed only nine cuts in his entire career, and never in a regular European Tour event.

Off the tee: McIlroy hits a green, but will have about 50 feet for a birdie. His body language says it all: Not happy. Tiger nearly picks up a hole-in-one (he would have won a Cadillac for that), running just past the hole on the left and he'll have 6 feet for his first birdie of the day.

On the green: McIlroy gives his lengthy birdie try a so-so run and then misses an 8-footer and picks up another bogey. Tiger can't convert on his birdie try, lipping out and tapping in for par. Disappointing for Tiger there, he needs those shots to fall.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 4 over (4 over for tournament); McIlroy, 3 over (6 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 6, Par 4, 469 yards

Martin Kaymer is playing the best of this high-profile 3-ball group, although he also dropped a shot at the 5th hole to fall back to 3 under.

Off the tee: McIlroy uses fairway metal and finds the left side of the fairway. He has looked smoother off the tee today. Tiger goes with 3-wood and finds the left rough.

Approach shot: With just over 200 yards into the back pin, Tiger doesn't get it to the green and has yet to hit a green in regulation, now 0-for-6. McIlroy hits a nice shot into the green, but it bounds to the back fringe.

Around the green: Tiger decides to putt from about 60 feet and gives it a nice run, settling about 3 feet behind the cup. McIlroy also putts from off the green - his at 12 feet and he misses to the right.

On the green: Tiger and McIlroy both knock in their short ones for par.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 4 over (4 over for tournament); McIlroy, 2 over (5 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 5, Par 4, 469 yards

This isn't what we thought we'd get at the beginning of the week, with the world's top two players struggling to even stay near or on the cut line. Woods has never missed the cut in a regular European Tour event.

Off the tee: McIlroy hits driver and finds the left rough, while Tiger is very quick with his swing and goes well right of the fairway. Don't know if he'll be able to find that ball, as there are bushes in that piece of desert.

Approach shot: Well, Tiger's second shot has to come out sideways from a bush and has to hit his third from well back in the fairway. Staring at a fourth bogey in five holes. From 210 yards, Tiger puts his third about 20 feet under the hole, so he'll have a chance at par. McIlroy comes up short of the green with his second shot.

Around the green: McIlroy gives his chip from the front of the green a good ride, but it runs about 8 feet past, which he'll have for a par.

On the green: And that is four bogeys in five holes for Tiger and is now going to have to play well to just make the cut. He's now 12 shots off the lead. McIlroy also misses and picks up another bogey. Some poor golf going on right now from the world's best.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 4 over (4 over for tournament); McIlroy, 2 over (5 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 4, Par 3, 174 yards

McIlroy can't get his putter going and Tiger has yet to hit a green in regulation. Neither is playing with a formula for success at the moment.

Off the tee: McIlroy pulls his tee ball well left of the green, releasing his hands on the club immediately. Poor tee ball. Tiger looks like he likes his ball, but it travels one club length too long and finds a bunker in the back.

Around the green: Tiger hits his bunker shot to about 8 feet for another look at par. That is his third par save of 8 feet or worse on the day. McIlroy duffs his chip and doesn't get the ball to the green. McIlroy's third shot scares the hole and trickles past the hole.

On the green: Tiger misses his 8-footer and is now 3 over through four holes. Good news? He has 14 holes to go. Meanwhile, McIlroy knocks in his short bogey putt.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 3 over (3 over for tournament); McIlroy, 1 over (4 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 3, Par 4, 439 yards

Tiger has played the first two holes this week at 4 over, which is leaving him in scramble mode, not attack mode. He is now 10 shots off the lead.

Off the tee: A pair of fairways hit here for Tiger and McIlroy. They'll both need to take advantage with their second shots, as they need some birdies, and quick.

Approach shot: Woods is about 30 yards behind McIlroy in the fairway and overcooks his ball a bit and goes off the back of the green. Meanwhile, McIlroy uses a wedge and nearly gets it back to the hole, but spins it back and will have at least 35 feet for birdie back up the green.

Around the green: Tiger's chip is a delicate one, but he leaves himself another 8-footer to save par.

On the green: McIlroy gets it up to the hole and knocks in a 3-footer for par. Tiger does drain his par putt to stop the bleeding and stays on the current cut line.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 2 over (2 over for tournament); McIlroy, Even (3 over for tournament)

• • •

No. 2, Par 5, 600 yards

After a pair of nice tee balls, neither Tiger or McIlroy can be happy with the results on that hole, especially Woods, who dropped a shot to open his round.

Off the tee: Another fairway hit for McIlroy, who splits the middle with driver. Tiger hammers one, but it finds the right rough. Tiger hit only five fairways in Round 1. He is 1 of 2 thus far today.

Second shot: Tiger backs off and changes club (5-wood to 3-wood), and then hits a shot that he yells at immediately, with the ball coming to rest in the rough to the right. McIlroy has to yell "Fore, right!" with his second shot, sending it past the ropes. A pair of subpar second shots there.

Third shot: Tiger takes a big swing at his ball in the rough and doesn't carry it far enough, finding a bunker. Moments later, McIlroy does carry it long enough, but it squirts about 12 feet past the hole.

Around the green: Tiger scares the hole with his bunker shot, but it runs 8 feet past, and he'll have another lengthy one to save par.

On the green: McIlroy misses his birdie attempt to the left and settles for a par. A nice score considering his poor second shot. Tiger hits the right edge of the cup, but it won't fall and he opens with back-to-back bogeys and is now on the cut line.

ON THE DAY: Tiger, 2 over (2 over for tournament); McIlroy, Even (3 over for tournament)

Elsewhere on the course: Leader Justin Rose fires a 3-under 69 to get into the clubhouse at 8 under.

• • •

No. 1, Par 4, 405 yards

McIlroy is wearing a white shirt, white hat and grey slacks. Meanwhile, Tiger has a grey/blue shirt, white hat and navy slacks on. Both are sporting white Nike kicks.

Off the tee: Much better rhythm for McIlroy with his first tee ball, taking driver up the left side of the fairway. Tiger uses 3-wood and just hammers it up the middle. Real confident follow through on that tee shot.

Approach shot: Tiger dislikes his second shot immediately, hanging his head in disgust as the ball pushes a bit right and into the long rough. McIlroy plays a very nice shot into the far-right pin and will have 8 feet for an opening birdie.

Around the green: Tiger has to be careful with this chip, but is a bit too careful and lands it barely on the green and leaves himself 15 feet to save par. He had 20 feet to save par on his opening hole in Round 1.

On the green: Tiger can't get the right-to-left par putt to fall, so he opens with a bogey and falls to 1 over. Meanwhile, McIlroy settles for par after his birdie putt stays left of the hole.

ON THE DAY: Tiger: 1 over (1 over for tournament); McIlroy: Even (3 over)

• • •

Update #3: 2:59 a.m. EST

Defending champion Robert Rock has withdrawn from the tournament, a day after a 4-over 76 to open his defense.

• • •

Update #2: 2:56 a.m. EST

Scores are not exactly spectacular thus far in the second round, but they are solid. Justin Rose has taken the outright lead at 7 under, two ahead of the field. He is 2 under on his round through 15 holes.

The cut line currently is 2 over, meaning McIlroy has at least a shot to make up, while Woods knows he really can't drop any shots at all to stay comfortable.

• • •

Update #1: 2:42 a.m. EST

Another beautiful day in Abu Dhabi, with a high of 70 expected, while winds will reach as high as 11 mph and there is no chance of rain.

• • •

Round 1 coverage

BLOCKBUSTER FIZZLES: There were plenty of greenbacks shelled out to get Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods to Abu Dhabi this week. After Thursday, it might be time to wonder if they brought their respective games with them, says our Alistair Tait. Story.

TIED AT THE TOP: With the bulk of the gallery following Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy in Abu Dhabi, Justin Rose and Jamie Donaldson quietly put up rounds of 67 to share the lead. Story.

TRACKER: We'll chalk that one up to being rusty. Making their 2013 season debuts, Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy could never get anything going and both had to settle for rounds that they'd rather put behind them. See how it happened.

• • •

Pre-tournament coverage

TEE TIMES: Take a look at the tee times for the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship at Abu Dhabi GC which features Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Martin Kaymer paired together for the first and second round. Pairings.

5 THINGS: Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy will play the first two rounds in Abu Dhabi together, starting at 10:40 p.m. EST on Wednesday night. Will Tiger make a statement, or will McIlroy pick up where he left off? Story.

TAKING A BACKSEAT: So many players throughout Tiger Woods' career have had to answer questions about the former World No. 1, rather than about themselves. He got a taste of his own medicine on Tuesday in Abu Dhabi, as the attention was on Rory McIlroy. Story.

'BEST MAN FOR THE JOB:' If Colin Montgomerie was unhappy at being passed over in favor of Paul McGinley as European Ryder Cup captain, then he did a good job of hiding it. The 2010 captain said all the right things about McGinley’s selection. Story.

RIGHT CHOICE: The European Tour picked the best man for the 2014 Ryder Cup captaincy in Paul McGinley, despite what went on behind the scenes. Commentary.

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