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Storm halts Tiger at Bay Hill

ORLANDO, Florida (AFP) –

Tiger Woods plays his second shot at the par 4, 1st hole on March 24, 2013 in Orlando, Florida

Tiger Woods of the United States plays his second shot at the par 4, 1st hole during the final round of the 2013 Arnold Palmer Invitational Presented by Mastercard at Bay Hill Golf and Country Club on March 24, 2013 in Orlando, Florida.

A thunder storm halted play at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and put a temporary halt to Tiger Woods’ pursuit of a victory that would see him regain the world No. 1 ranking.

Spectators were evacuated from the Bay Hill course as rain driven by high winds and lightning swept into the area, where a tornado warning was issued.

Woods had just stretched his lead to three shots with a birdie on the par-three second hole.

If Woods can capture his eighth Arnold Palmer Invitational title he’ll supplant Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy atop the world rankings.

The 14-time major champion has spent a record 623 weeks on top of the world.

But he has not paced the rankings since October of 2010 after injuries and an infamous sex scandal saw him tumble from the top 50.

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