Playing 26 holes on Saturday takes its toll on Tiger Woods' back at Masters

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AUGUSTA, Ga. – Tiger Woods’ alarm sounded at 3:30 a.m. ET on Saturday to start a day that stretched more than 12 hours for the five-time Masters champion.

Because of Thursday’s weather delay at Augusta National, Woods played 26 holes on Saturday. It was the kind of test that’s proven to be a challenge for the 44-year-old with multiple back surgeries.


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“I had my day off yesterday, which was nice,” he said following a third-round 72 that left outside the top 20. “Today was not the case. We’ve been at it for quite some time. It’s just part of the deal.  If you have long days like this, I’m going to get a little bit sore, which I definitely am.”

Woods faced similarly long and physically demanding days at last year’s Masters, which he won for his 15th major championship, but throughout this third round he was spotted gingerly bending over to pick his ball from the hole and moving slowly. He explained that marathon days like Saturday are going to take a toll.

“I can walk all day,” he said. “The hard part is bending and twisting. I think that’s part of the game, though, and so that’s always been the challenge with my back issues and I guess will always continue to be.”

Woods made just three birdies – compared to two bogeys – over the course of his 26 holes on Day 3.