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Woods shoots 72, finishes T-23 in 2018 debut

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SAN DIEGO – Tiger Woods wrapped up his first PGA Tour start in a year with an even-par 72 in windy conditions Sunday at the Farmers Insurance Open.

When he finished his round, he was in a tie for 27th at 3-under 285.

In strong Santa Ana winds, Woods continued to struggle off the tee at Torrey Pines, hitting only three fairways, but he was sharper with his iron play and continued to rely on his short game and putting, mixing four birdies with four bogeys.

It was just the third time since the 2013 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, his last victory, that Woods recorded all four rounds at par or better.

“Very pleased,” he said. “I fought hard for these scores.”

Full-field scores from the Farmers Insurance Open

Farmers Insurance Open: Articles, photos and videos

For the week, he hit only 17 of 56 fairways, a career-low 30 percent, which ranked last in the field. Not surprisingly, he hit only 42 of 72 greens but was in the top 20 in strokes gained-putting.

This was Woods’ first PGA Tour event in a year, since he missed the cut in this event last year after rounds of 76-72. He played one round in Dubai the following week, then withdrew because of back spasms. He underwent a fourth back surgery, a fusion, last April.

Woods tied for ninth in his limited-field event in the Bahamas at the end of the year. His made cut here was his first on Tour since the 2015 Wyndham Championship.

After Torrey, Woods will have two weeks off before returning at the Genesis Open, a tournament that benefits his foundation. He hasn’t played at Riviera since 2006. 

When asked what he needs to clean up before then, Woods replied: “Everything. I’m excited to get this one under my belt.”