Casey wins at Innisbrook as Woods come up short by a putt

All eyes and phone cameras were on Tiger Woods during the third round of the PGA event in Florida

But the 14-time major victor, playing just his fourth PGA Tour event since undergoing spinal fusion surgery last April, was unable to repeat the feat and had to settle for a share of second place.

Woods, seeking his 80th win on the PGA Tour and his first since 2013, left himself a long second shot into the 18th green, and could only cajole a tricky 11-metre putt within about a foot of the hole, and tapped in for the par.

This was despite Woods' insane 44-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole on Sunday that put him in contention.

The 14-time major victor, who has struggled with a series of injuries since his most recent victory, laid well back off the 18th tee and hit his approach from 185 yards to just inside 40 feet.

"It didn't feel very good", Woods said after the hole, according to the Golf Channel. "I keep getting a just little bit better and a little bit sharper".

Those are astounding figures for golf, considering it's not only a non-major, but also a tour stop that's probably not even on the next tier down in terms of PGA Tour events.

Woods looked closer than ever to winning in his remarkable return from fusion surgery on his lower back last April.

But victory was not to be for the 14 major victor and holder of 79 trophies.

"That ignited it for me", said the 2013 US Open champion. "At the end of the day, being back in contention and having a chance to win a golf tournament is always fun".

Woods and his massive following went dormant after an opening birdie to briefly share the lead.

But Woods could not replicate the magic at the par-four 18th, where he missed a hard 12-metre birdie putt that would have forced a play-off with Casey. It will be good for me to go back and play there, I'm really looking forward to it'.

Needing a final-hole birdie for victory or a par to force a play-off, Reed elected to putt from a tricky position on the green and saw his ball roll back down the slope to his feet on his way to a closing bogey. Those little mistakes will get you.

The 40-year-old began the final round five shots off the lead but carded four birdies and a bogey in a front nine of 33, before rolling in a hat-trick of birdies from the 11th. "A couple putts here and there and it could have been a different story".

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