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Tiger Woods withdraws from The Genesis Invitational due to flu

4 Min Read



    Written by Staff, PGATOUR.COM

    When Tiger Woods was carted off of The Riviera Country Club on Friday afternoon, the obvious question was whether his body had failed him again. He had suffered back spasms just a day earlier, and so it seemed likely that the many surgically-repaired parts of his frame were undermining his latest comeback.

    It was quickly revealed, however, that flu-like symptoms, and not a balky back, were the reason for Woods’ early end to his 2024 debut. It was some two hours before Woods was seen again, however, a time span that led to speculation about his condition after two fire trucks and an ambulance arrived at Riviera.

    That’s why there was a sigh of relief after Woods was seen walking out of the clubhouse and into the passenger seat of a waiting courtesy car. Woods’ had received treatment during his time in the clubhouse, including an IV bag, for potential dehydration and dizziness related to his illness.

    Woods was 1-over through six holes Friday and had just hit his tee shot on the par-4 seventh hole when he called it quits. He was carted back to the locker room by a rules official at 1:35 p.m. local time. Emergency personnel began arriving at the course shortly afterward.

    Tiger Woods withdraws from The Genesis due to illness in Round 2

    Rob McNamara, EVP of TGR Ventures, said Woods started feeling flu-like symptoms the previous night, and they worsened when he awoke this morning.

    “He had a little bit of a fever and was better during the warm-up, but then when he got out there and was walking and playing, he started feeling dizzy,” McNamara said. “Ultimately the doctors are saying he's got some -- potentially some type of flu and that he was dehydrated. He's been treated with an IV bag and he's doing much, much better and he'll be released on his own here soon.”

    Asked if it had anything to do with Woods’ previous injuries to his ankle or back, McNamara said, “Not physical at all. His back is fine. It was all medical illness, dehydration, which is now, the symptoms are reversing themselves now that he’s had an IV.”

    Woods posted on X about his condition on Saturday: "I would like to confirm that I had to withdraw from @thegenesisinv due to illness, which we now know is influenza. I am resting and feeling better. Good luck to the players this weekend. I’m disappointed to not be there and want to thank @GenesisUSA and all the fans for the support."

    The Genesis marked Woods' first official TOUR start since he was in too much pain to walk and withdrew from last year’s Masters during the third round; he underwent ankle surgery shortly thereafter. Woods returned to competition at the Hero World Challenge in December, placing 18th in the 20-player field, then teamed with son Charlie at the PNC Championship two weeks later.

    Optimistic after the Hero, Woods said he intended to play roughly one TOUR event a month this season. He managed just 24 holes at Riviera before being stopped by illness.

    Several reporters assembled in the parking lot, hopeful to catch Woods on the way to his car. When two fire trucks and an ambulance arrived, everyone on-site, including Woods’ fellow players, wondered about his condition. Several minutes passed before an empty gurney was loaded into the ambulance and all three emergency vehicles drove away.

    Players like Rickie Fowler, Jason Day and Tony Finau emerged from the locker room after their rounds and asked the throng of reporters if they knew anything. Reporters asked the players the same thing.

    At approximately 3:30 p.m., Woods’ security man drove his courtesy car, a red Genesis SUV, to the door to the locker room. Finally, at 3:43, more than two hours after he withdrew, Woods came out the locker room door with his caddie, Lance Bennett, who loaded his golf clubs into the back. McNamara came next, and then, with the SUV shielding him from photographers, Woods emerged and got in the front passenger seat before being driven away.

    Woods, the tournament host, historically has appeared in CBS’ booth and presented the trophy to the winner of The Genesis Invitational upon the tournament’s conclusion. It’s unclear whether he will be feeling well enough to return to do so.

    Since his successful 2019 that saw him win his 15th major at the Masters and his 82nd TOUR title at the ZOZO Championship, Woods has played just nine official events in the last four seasons. He has missed the cut twice and withdrawn three times.

    He dealt with back spasms as he finished his first-round 72 on Thursday. He shanked his approach shot on the par-4 18th due to the spasms.

    "It's been spasming the last three holes, and it just locked up on me,” Woods said Thursday of the shank on No. 18. “Didn't move, didn't rotate, and presented hosel first."
    His back wasn’t the problem Friday. But illness was.

    “I saw it, he obviously wasn't himself, just didn't look right,” said playing partner Gary Woodland (72, even par). “… He was quieter. Obviously, it's cut day, we're all trying to play well, the whole group's trying to focus and pick ourselves up and play well. I feel bad for him. He definitely was trying to fight through it, and I hope he's all right.”

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