Hoylake, England • As his tee shot curled farther and farther away from the 17th fairway, heading toward all sorts of trouble, Tiger Woods simply stuffed his club in the bag.
He appeared to mumble something to himself, but that was about it. No fiery outburst. No coarse language. No complaints about someone talking too loud, or being on the phone, or snapping a picture.
Shoulders slumping, Woods looked as though he had accepted his fate.
There won’t be a 15th major championship.
Not at this British Open.
Woods needed a birdie at the final hole — his only one of the day — just to make the cut. He walked off the 18th with a 5-over 77, his worst Open round since that stormy day at Muirfield in 2002, and headed to the weekend a staggering 14 shots behind the leader, Rory McIlroy.
"Not very good," Woods said.
Woods made double-bogey at the first hole, a bogey at the second. Just like that, all the good vibes from a 69 in the opening round were wiped away, his score tumbling to even par. From there, it was a grind — 14 pars in a row as McIlroy pulled away.
Then came the 17th, where Woods made such a mess of things, he nearly missed the cut at a major for only the fourth time in his pro career.
Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.