Jack Nicklaus joins chorus of disapproval over Rory McIlroy's withdrawal

World number one quit unexpectedly at the Honda Classic

Palm Beach Gardens

The pain just won't go away for Rory McIlroy. First Tiger Woods warned him to be careful what he says in future and now Jack Nicklaus has weighed in to give the kid who sees him as a father figure an ear bashing.

McIlroy will be reaching for the paracetamol again – for a sore head to go with his toothache – when he hears what Nicklaus had to say about the world No 1's controversial mid-round withdrawal from the Honda Classic here in Florida on Friday. "He shouldn't have walked off the course," Nicklaus said. "If he would have thought about it for five minutes, he probably wouldn't have done it. He's a good kid and tries to do the right thing but unfortunately that wasn't.

"I don't know whether it was a wisdom tooth or whatever. Probably he's so frustrated with what's happening and the way he's played for the last month or so. That would be my assessment although I might be talking out of school." Nicklaus had paid a visit to the course he designed and a tournament that benefits the children's charity run by his wife Barbara.

Nicklaus also ridiculed the theory that McIlroy's new Nike clubs are to blame for his dip in form. "It's easy to blame it on your clubs but I don't buy that," Nicklaus said explaining that he once had a deal to play with different clubs and balls in the United States, Australia and for the Open in the United Kingdom. "It didn't make that much of a difference. Rory's talent is a much greater influence on his game than his clubs. You have to learn to deal with all that stuff. He can play with anything," Nicklaus said. "When the Masters comes around [next month], Rory McIlroy's game will be just fine."

Tiger Woods found himself heading for the exit before the leaders had even teed off yesterday. He fired a final-round 62 last year to finish runner-up to McIlroy. Not this year, though. "I think I passed 62 around the 12th," he said as he continues to tease with the sublime (an eagle at the 18th after a towering, rip-roaring three-iron to 10 feet of the flag) to the ridiculous (two lost balls and back in the pack at four over par). "I feel good with what I did, though," Woods said. "Just had too many penalty shots. Just got to clean up the rounds."

Both Woods and McIlroy will compete again this week at the WGC-Cadillac Championship in Miami where Justin Rose is defending champion. They will hope to find some form as the Masters is now just around the corner. Woods has usurped McIlroy as the favourite to win the first major of the year as he attempts to chase down Nicklaus's record 18 major victories. Woods has been stuck on 14 since winning the 2008 US Open.

"I still think he'll break my record," Nicklaus said. "I don't think for Tiger to win four, five, six or seven more is that big of a stretch. He's always been cold-blooded to focus on what he needs to do. No reason why he can't get it done. Let's put it this way," Nicklaus added with a wry grin, "he hasn't won a major for five years. He'd better get on with it."

Lee Westwood didn't get with it at all. Playing in his new home town, he began the final round just two shots off the lead. He finished six shots adrift and tied ninth at two under par with Graeme McDowell and Charl Schwartzel after stalling with a final round of four over par. Fellow Englishmen Rose and David Lynn shared fourth place on three under par.

Victory yesterday went to America's Michael Thompson. The 27-year-old from Tucson, Arizona held off 2006 US Open champion Geoff Ogilvy to win his first ever professional tournament. Thompson seized control with a 50-foot eagle putt on the third hole. He stayed in charge with superb par saves early on the back nine and made birdie from the bunker on the last hole for a one-under 69 and a two-shot victory over Ogilvy.

Suggested Topics
Sport
footballLIVE City face Stoke, while Warnock returns to Palace dugout
Life and Style
3D printed bump keys can access almost any lock
gadgets + techSoftware needs photo of lock and not much more
News
Paul McCartney backs the
people
News
i100
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Inside the gallery at Frederick Bremer School in Walthamstow
tvSimon Usborne goes behind the scenes to watch the latest series
Life and Style
Silvia says of her famous creation: 'I never stopped wearing it. Because I like to wear things when they are off the radar'
fashionThe fashion house celebrated fifteen years of the punchy pouch with a weighty tome
Arts and Entertainment
Gregg Wallace in Summer's Supermarket Secrets
tv All of this year's 15 contestants have now been named
News
i100Steve Carell selling chicken, Tina Fey selling saving accounts and Steve Colbert selling, um...
Life and Style
A picture taken on January 12, 2011 shows sex shops at the Paris district of Pigalle.
newsThe industry's trade body issued the moratorium on Friday
Arts and Entertainment
Could we see Iain back in the Bake Off tent next week?
tv Contestant teased Newsnight viewers on potential reappearance
News
i100
News
The slice of Prince Charles and Princess Diana's wedding cake and the original box from 29 July 1981
newsPiece of Charles and Diana's wedding cake sold at auction in US
Voices
The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
voicesNigel Farage: Those who predicted we would lose momentum heading into the 2015 election are going to have to think again
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012
film Cara Delevingne 'in talks' to star in Zoolander sequel
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in his Liverpool shirt for the first time
football
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone