Well, that didn’t last too long. It’s been two months since Tiger Woods returned to golf after a series of surgeries kept him away from the game for over a year, and now the 41-year-old’s body is acting up again.

Woods withdrew from the Omega Dubai Desert Classic this morning after shooting an opening-round 77 yesterday. This was just his third tournament in the last 18 months, and at times during yesterday’s round he was seen moving gingerly around the course. After his opening round Woods insisted that he was healthy, telling reporters, “No, I wasn’t in pain at all. I was just trying to hit shots, and I wasn’t doing a very good job.”

This morning, Woods’s agent announced that his client was withdrawing from the tournament due to back spasms, but stressed that this latest problem has nothing to do with the nerve damage that has cost Woods so much playing time over the last two years. From ESPN:

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“Spasms are a funny thing; I’m certainly no doctor, but they come and go,” Steinberg said. “And again, the fact that he feels as though it’s not the nerve pain, that’s very encouraging for him. He’s had spasms before. He’s got to get the spasm to calm down, from what I gather. He has his trainer here, which is good, and that’s who has been working on him for the past several hours.”

It’s possible that these spasms have nothing to do with the back problems that have already kept Woods off the course for so long, but you get the feeling that at some point these cascading injuries will just become too much to bear. Woods’s next scheduled tournament is the Genesis Open, beginning on Feb. 16. We’ll see if he makes it.

[ESPN]