Tiger Woods hasn't had control of his swing for two days now, struggling in the second round of the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia.
After scrambling to make par on the par-5 15th hole, where his second shot was wayward to the right of the green and his third shot ended up in a bunker, Woods stepped to the tee at the par-3 16th.
And promptly kicked his club.
Woods, a four-time Masters champion, sprayed his tee shot into the greenside bunker at 16, and before the ball had landed, Woods had dropped his club to the ground. From there, he booted the head of the iron with his right foot, sending the club 10 yards backward.
At that time, CBS golf analyst Nick Faldo said Woods had clearly lost his game. "I think we can officially say Tiger has lost his game . . . and his mind."
Twitter world lit up, with one saying Woods had lost his mind. And one tweet said the kick proved one thing – Woods' problems with his Achilles seem to have vanished.
Woods made bogey on the 16th to fall to 3 over par, and he finished with a 75, leaving him tied for 40th, eight shots out of the lead.
When asked after the round about kicking the club, Woods responded in terms of his golf game, not his emotional state at the time.
"Well, it's a simple 9-iron. It's not that hard," he calmly told a swarm of media outside the clubhouse. "Just a three-quarter 9-iron … it's a very easy shot."
He said he had a 4-iron on No. 15 that disappointed him even more, though he didn't take it out on that club. He made par -- not good enough on the par-5s -- after hitting the 4-iron into the gallery and then hitting his next shot into a bunker.
"The 4-iron probably ticked me off more than the 9-iron because I can hit that ball 50 yards left of that flag and still be fine. The only thing I can't do is put it to the right of the hole. And what do I do? I put it right of the hole. So that was very frustrating."
As he walked earlier toward the clubhouse, Woods was applauded by dozens of fans. He smiled and said thanks. Woods tees off in Round 3 Saturday at 10:45 a.m. with defending champ Charl Schwartzel.
"I've been around the block for a number of years, and I understand how to be patient," he said. "I understand how to grind it out, and the tournament is not over. Last year I think on the final round I made up seven shots. I can do this. I've just got to be patient. Obviously, I've got to cut that deficit down tomorrow with a good, solid round, then get off to a quick start on the front nine Sunday and see where that puts me."
The No. 16 hole has been an eventful place this week. On Wednesday a restroom in the woods nears the tee had been damaged significantly by a fallen tree. It was repaired overnight. We'll see whether Tiger can do the same with his game.
Before coming here, Woods earned his PGA Tour win since the fall of 2009 – the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill in Orlando. He said before the Masters that he was pleased to be driving the ball straight. But so far at this event he's tied for last in fairways hit off the tee, 50 percent.
What happened since Bay Hill?
"Well, I've been working hard on my short game," said Woods, who went immediately to the range after media interviews and hit until dark. "And I think what (swing coach Sean Foley) and I have been talking about is I think that might have crept into my takeaway of my full swing, and unfortunately it's just not quite consistent. It's not what it was at Bay Hill and prior tournaments. … That's obviously very frustrating."