Tiger Woods continued his erratic comeback to competitive golf with a frustrating opening-round 77 at the Dubai Desert Classic.
The world No 666, making only his third competitive start since having 16 months out following back problems, failed to register a single birdie on his way to slipping 12 strokes adrift of early leader Sergio Garcia.
Playing alongside Sheffield duo Danny Willett and Matt Fitzpatrick, Woods again struggled off the tee and also failed to read the greens in good conditions at Emirates Golf Club.
Woods, who made an early exit from his PGA Tour return at last week’s Farmers Insurance Open, now faces a battle to avoid missing the cut for a second week running.
Beginning on the back nine, Woods pulled his opening tee shot into the rough and his approach into the sand before two-putting from 25 feet for bogey.
Woods dropped another shot after he failed to get up-and-down from just off the 12th green and posted a third bogey when his third shot on the par-five 18th rolled back into the water.
Having reached the turn in 40, Woods produced a poor chip from just off the second green and missed a seven-foot birdie putt at the third.
Things unravelled further with a three-putt bogey at the fifth following a good tee shot, before Woods missed a five-foot par-save at the next.
Woods then saw a birdie attempt at the seventh brush the edge of the hole and pulled another close-range chance at the ninth – his final hole – tentatively wide of the target.
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