SAN DIEGO - Masters champion Bubba Watson has withdrawn from the Farmers Insurance Open because of an illness.
Watson is a past champion at Torrey Pines, winning two years ago with a birdie putt on the final hole. He tweeted Thursday, "Pulling out of tourney this morning, don't have energy for golf. Feel the same as Maui." Watson had a stomach illness at Kapalua during the Tournament of Champions, where he tied for fourth.
Watson also tweeted, "Wife and I are sick, hope little man doesn't get it. Time to rest and be ready to play next week."
The local doctor who was called to Watson's hotel room Thursday morning said, "The guy looked miserable, and you can't play with that. You know if you've got a 102 [degree] temperature you can't walk."
Dr. Christopher Saucedo of Scripps Green's Urgent Care Center said this is one of the worst flu seasons he's seen. He said he can't imagine a golfer or a fan trying to walk the course while battling it.
A tournament source told 10News Phil Mickelson was also fighting the flu, but he somehow managed to get through the first round of play.
Mickelson played alongside Watson's replacement, Billy Mayfair, who, as first alternate, was waiting in the wings for a chance to play.
"He was nice enough to withdraw and at least not play a few holes and then withdraw, so it gave me a good chance to at least get in and try and play," said Mayfair.
Fans were disappointed that Watson was a no-show.
"He's such a great guy to watch, he's fun to watch, and it's disappointing, but if he's sick, he's sick," said Northern Californian Pat Clark, whose husband used to play in the pro-am event.
Jaden Hunter and his father had been looking forward to watching Watson play.
"Me and my dad were looking at the tee times and we saw that Bubba wasn't there and then we were sad because I wanted to see his pink driver," said Jaden.