Bubba Watson wasn’t the only one watching Tiger Woods on Sunday and noticing that, after the second hole of the Bridgestone Invitational, something just wasn’t right with him.
Tom Watson, the U.S. Ryder Cup captain, concurred and noted that it “doesn’t bode well right now” for Woods to be on the Ryder Cup team. Watson noted that, after Woods played an awkward shot on which he said he “jarred” his back, his shots were terrible, including one on No. 5 that was 65 yards short of the flag.
‘‘I watched him play almost the entire front nine,’’ Watson told Sirius XM radio. ‘‘And the shot he had at 5 … I said, ‘Something’s wrong with Tiger.’ You don’t hit that terrible a shot ever — ever. And then, of course, No. 9, he just couldn’t go any farther. It concerns me because that’s an injury that seems like he tried to address before and he’s come back from that particular injury.”
After hitting his tee shot on nine, Woods withdrew from the tournament, only the third in which he has played since having surgery to repair a pinched nerve in March. Walking gingerly, he headed to a cart and rode to his car. As he changed into sneakers, he was clearly in pain and didn’t bother to tie the laces. He headed for his private jet and flew home to Florida, his immediate future uncertain. The final major of the season, the PGA Championship, begins this week and, beyond that, Watson will be selecting players for the Ryder Cup team. Taking Woods was an iffy proposition before the injury, but Watson wasn’t tipping his hand.
‘‘Tiger would be a great addition to our team,’’ Watson said. ‘‘As I’ve said all along, I would pick Tiger Woods if he’s healthy and playing well. This doesn’t bode well right now. I just hope that maybe it’s just an isolated problem that he can turn around and possibly play this week at the PGA.”