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Golf roundup: Tiger Woods’s ascent to No. 1 blown back

The wind allowed Tiger Woods to play the second hole, and grab a three-stroke lead.

BRIAN BLANCO/REUTERS

The wind allowed Tiger Woods to play the second hole, and grab a three-stroke lead.

Tiger Woods is going to have to wait one more day to try to reclaim No. 1 in the world.

Moments after Woods made a 10-foot birdie putt on the second hole, a vicious thunderstorm packing gusts that topped out at 62 miles per hour interrupted the final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Orlando, and wiped out play until Monday.

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The storm dumped nearly 1½ inches on Bay Hill and formed small ponds in the fairways — there was even a fish in the middle of the 18th fairway. The wind toppled the TV tower behind the 10th green, which was a pile of metal poles, wood, mesh netting, and had a stationary camera in the middle of it all.

About an hour after a tornado warning expired, officials said they would need time to clean up the course and let it drain. The final round was to resume at 10 a.m. Monday.

Woods is going after his eighth win at Bay Hill, which would return him to No. 1 in the world ranking for the first time since the last week of October in 2010. He hit all of six shots on Sunday, enough to build a three-shot lead over Rickie Fowler, Keegan Bradley, John Huh, and Ken Duke.

There was plenty of action on a short day, none more bizarre than Sergio Garcia.

The Spaniard’s tee shot on the 10th hole somehow came to rest about 15 feet up in an oak tree, sitting between two large branches. Garcia used a cart to jump into the tree, and after a few minutes, hit a onehanded, backhanded shot back to the fairway, before jumping some 8 feet back to the ground.

William McGirt was playing his shot from the fairway bunker on the other side and had no idea what Garcia was doing.

“I looked over and Sergio is up in the air, and I'm trying to figure out what in the hell he’s going to do,’’ he said. “He called for a club. He’s hugging the tree. And the ball comes flying out.”

Sadly for Garcia, he chunked his next shot and wound up with a double bogey. Two holes later, the horn sounded. McGirt said Garcia handed him the scorecard and said, ‘‘I'm out of here.’’

Garcia earlier had taken a 9 on the par-5 sixth hole. Garcia withdrew from the tournament, saying in a statement on his website that his left shoulder and Achilles’ tendon were hurt and he did not want to risk doing more damage by finishing six holes on Monday.

LPGA — Beatriz Recari sank an 18-foot birdie putt from the fringe on the second hole of a playoff with I.K. Kim to win the Kia Classic in Carlsbad, Calif.

After Recari and Kim three-putted No. 18 both in regulation and on the first playoff hole, Recari ended it for her first victory since her rookie season of 2010. Recari, who brought a two-stroke lead into the day, had a chance to win in regulation. But, like Kim in the pairing ahead of her, she three-putted the par-4 18th. Recari closed with a 2-over 74 to match Kim at 9 under at Aviara. Kim shot a 71.

European — Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat shot a 2-under-par 70 to beat Eduardo Molinari by a stroke and win a Malaysian Open shortened to 54 holes after constant rain in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Kiradech had five birdies and four bogeys for a three-round total of 203. Molinari had a 67, one stroke ahead of Denmark’s Anders Hansen, who shot 66 for a 205 total.

Champions — Michael Allen rallied to win the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic, shooting a 5-under 67 for the day and 11 under for the tournament to leapfrog a crowded leaderboard in Saucier, Miss., for a one-stroke victory.

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