Tiger Woods: Golfer's gag sinks without trace at press conference

    (CNN)He's gone seven years without winning a major, he's ranked No. 278 in the world and now Tiger Woods is even struggling to land a joke.

    It's been a season to forget for the American, having missed the cut in consecutive majors for the first time ever at the U.S. Open and the Open Championship.
    But it was at Whistling Straits this week, as he gears up for the U.S. PGA Championship, that the 39-year-old finally hit rock bottom.
      Asked a routine question by a reporter at a press conference ahead of the year's final major, which gets underway Thursday, Woods attempted to inject some humor into proceedings -- only to see his one-liner fall flat.
      "Now that you're getting a lot older, is it fair to say that you have lost a step, or at least half a step?" Woods was asked.
      "No, I don't think so, I can still walk the same pace on the golf course," he replied, before breaking into a nervous-looking smile.
      Cue complete silence.
      McIlroy fitness
      The 14-time major winner went on to speak about the return to fitness of Rory McIlroy in time for the U.S. PGA Championship -- this time keeping the jokes to a minimum.
      World No. 1 McIlroy had been sidelined for nearly six weeks after rupturing his ankle ligaments while playing football, but has since insisted he is ready to defend his U.S. PGA title in Wisconsin.
      "He has good physios, he's worked hard," Woods told reporters when quizzed about McIlroy, who has been at Whistling Straits for several days practicing ahead of his return to action.
      "It's a matter of how long is he going to have to go with it like this or is he going to have to get it surgically repaired.
      "And then obviously this is going to be tough. This is going to be a tough golf course. Even the walks, from tee box to fairway, they're not straight. And it's just a matter of how can he hold that up.
      "I blew out my knee and played for a good nine months before I had it fixed, so it can be done.
      "Is he probably going to be in pain? Probably, yeah. Swelling is going to probably occur, but that's why the physios are there, and I'm sure they'll get him organized."