05 February, 2017
Garcia resumed on the sixth hole and reeled off three straight birdies on his way to a 67 and a three-shot halfway lead, which the 37-year-old Spaniard managed to maintain in dramatic fashion.
"No, I wasn't in pain at all", Woods said after the first round at Emirates Golf Club.
His agent Mark Steinberg says Woods' pain came out of nowhere, but the fact that it's not nerves is quite encouraging.
After a first round without a birdie, Woods said he was fine even though he appeared to be uncomfortable at times.
The creaking American, now ranked 666th after his long injury layoff, trailed Spain's early leader Sergio Garcia by 12 shots and with only three players below him on the leaderboard among the morning starters.
Nature imposed its own judgment on the status of Tiger Woods the golfer and the prognosis must be bleak. "It gets dark very, very quickly here, and I couldn't really see much on the last three shots".
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Strong wind was forecast for Friday, making the prospect of picking up some strokes in the second round hard. He was returning to the PGA Tour after a 15-month absence caused by back surgery.
Last week in San Diego, Woods returned to the PGA Tour and lasted only two days. He played in the Bahamas the first week of December in an unofficial event with an 18-man field and no cut.
"He can move around, he just can't make a full rotation on the swing".
Today, the momentum kept slipping away just when it seemed to be coming Lahiri's way. "It is hard to focus for so many holes", added Thomas, who played 32 holes yesterday, including the 14 from his second round. He's got to get the spasm to calm down, from what I gather. Woods said he wasn't in pain after the round, but before the second round he withdrew with back spasms he said hit him at dinner the previous night.
"I think spasms are a amusing thing, I'm certainly not a doctor, but they come and go - again the fact that he feels it's not the nerve pain is very encouraging for him".
Woods should not have gone to Dubai; instead he should have taken his chances at the Phoenix Open where the temperatures have averaged in the 70's during the day if he felt like he had to play this week.