Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson drive their way into oblivion at PGA Championship

Stuart Franklin

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson may be nos. 1 and 2 in the world, but neither is in the hunt for the Wanamaker Trophy.

Tiger Woods threw in the towel Saturday, proclaiming on his website that his drive for a 15th major title, after shooting a 3-over 73 in the third round at the PGA championship, had come to an inglorious end.

"I didn't play very well today," Woods, who began his day with a bogey at the par-4 first hole, told reporters after playing himself out of the tournament. "I didn't hit it very good, didn't make anything, kept blocking every putt. So it was a tough day."

If there was any consolation for Woods, the top-ranked player in the world who will end his fifth straight season without a major win, it was that No. 2 Phil Mickelson played even worse.

Meanwhile 43-year-old Jim Furyk shot a 68 to put himself in position to win his second career major.

Mickelson, who had an emergency session with swing coach Butch Harmon after Thursday’s opening-round 71, shot an 8-over 78 and ended his ugly round one spot north of DFL. He was faring no better on Sunday, sandwiching a triple bogey-7 at the fifth between two birdies.

For both players, lousy tee shots have been their undoing. Woods hit seven of 14 fairways on Friday but only five on Saturday. He failed to find the short grass each of his four times with driver in hand -- lending credence to a David Feherty quip about the 14-time major champion.

"I’m not sure [Tiger] could hit the sea off an aircraft carrier," Golf Channel’s resident funny man said during last Sunday’s broadcast at Firestone. And that’s as Woods was wrapping up a seven-stroke victory at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

Lefty also reached just five fairways on Saturday on his way to tying his worst score ever in a major. He carded a triple bogey-7 on the seventh hole, doubled the 14th, and limped in at 5-over in his final five holes.

Starting Saturday's third round 11 shots off the lead and knowing he needed to go to get into the hunt, Mickelson, who left driver out of his bag during his Scottish and British Open wins, went back to his "Phranken-wood," essentially a 2-wood that he plays like a driver, according to Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard.

"I put the driver in the bag today and the first hole I used it was on the fourth and hooked in the rough and made six," Mickelson told Hoggard. "The next hole I used it was seven and blocked it in the rough and made triple.

"Thought I’d give it one more try on 14 and hit it in the left trees and made double. My luck with that club has not been very good."

So, after playing out the string on Sunday, it will be back to the drawing board for both players.

"I’ve been swinging well this year and hitting shots easy, but these last two weeks after taking a week off after the British it just hasn’t quite clicked," Mickelson said. "I’m going to take a week off and start fresh."

Mickelson began his race to the airport at 8:35 a.m. ET, with Woods slated to play with the immortal Brooks Koepka at 10:45.

More golf from SB Nation:

Tiger, Rory and Sunday predictions at Oak Hill

• GIFs Mickelson does crescent kicks…or the hurdles? | Blixt hits it into fan's back pocket, then hits shot of the week

Rory sinks ridiculous back-to-back birdies | Jason Dufner has a fat lip

Leaderboard updates and live coverage of Sunday's round

Phil almost forgets to register, avoids DQ | Needs directions to 1st tee

Tiger Woods and an impossible standard

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