Jim Fuyrk’s bright idea of pairing Woods with a proven hitman in Patrick Reed went nowhere as golf’s Renaissance man and Captain America crashed to a 3&1 defeat to Tommy Fleetwood and Francesco Molinari.
Woods, who looked pancake flat, was subsequently rested for the afternoon session – only the second he has missed in eight Ryder Cups.
This was a disappointment for the crowd who had afforded Woods the sort of reception on the first tee usually reserved for one of their own Europeans.
As much as they were at Le Golf National to see European wins, they were also there to see Woods in person. His revival story has captured the imagination around the globe.
Despite the superhero status, he is just flesh and blood though and he looked every one of his 42 years yesterday.
Reports from inside the American camp suggest he has spent as long in the ice bath as the team room trying to get over the exertions of his Tour Championship win last weekend, and he looked to be moving stiffly yesterday.
There were flashes of brilliance, such as the floated chip from the greenside rough at the third which flirted with the hole, and he did make two birdies in the first ten holes as the USA moved to two up.
But when it mattered he and Reed could not deliver faced with Fleetwood and Molinari’s surging finish.
“We just couldn’t put any pressure on them,” said Woods. “We couldn’t answer them. They put it on us pretty hard.”
To be fair Woods did not receive much help from Reed, who has been off colour of late on the PGA Tour and, aside from a chip-in at the tenth, also struggled yesterday. The ignition the Texan might have brought to Woods was nowhere to be seen.
Furyk, like many American captains before him, must be scratching his head at how to get the best out of Woods whose combined fourballs and foursomes Ryder Cup record now reads won nine, lost 17, halved one.
Compare that to his rival as the greatest of all time, Jack Nicklaus who won 12, lost four, halved one.
Admittedly Nicklaus had Great Britain and Ireland to face rather than the whole of Europe, but Woods’ numbers are still incredible. Incredibly bad.