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Rory McIlroy balances sub-par 2016 with 'lifelong dream'

An Irish Open victory helped make 2016 memorable, despite falling short of his initial targets for the year.

Rory McIlroy celebrates a successful putt at Hazeltine.
Rory McIlroy celebrates a successful putt at Hazeltine.

RORY MCILROY REFLECTED on achieving a “lifelong dream” in 2016, despite the year falling short of his expectations.

McIlroy picked up three tournament wins in 22 events across the 12 months, adding the Deutsche Ban Championship and Tour Championship titles to the Irish Open, which he won in May.

The Tour Championship victory also secured the Fedex Cup and $10million for the world number two.

However, it was his triumph on home soil at The K Club which stood out most for the four-time major winner.

“It’s been interesting, 2016 has definitely been interesting,” McIlrory told Sky Sports.

I feel like the start of the year was consistent without getting any wins.

“I’d been playing pretty well, but not getting the results I wanted, and then a huge win at the Irish Open for me in front of a home crowd.

That’s been a lifelong dream of mine, to win the Irish Open. I’d pretty much won every other Irish event and the Irish Open completed the set so that was nice.”

After that success, however, McIlroy faltered, failing to make the cut at the US Open and the PGA Championship, either side of a fifth-placed finish that faded into irrelevance at Troon.

“It was a bit of a disappointing summer, I finished fifth at The Open, but that got lost in the Henrik [Stenson] and Phil [Mickelson] storyline,” he added,

But I sort of redeemed myself, it could have ran on and been very disappointing, but I saved it with a Fedex Cup win with a couple of wins in the playoffs.

“It’s been a good year. It hasn’t been what I had hoped for at the start, but it’s been reasonable enough and I’m pretty happy with how the past 11 months has gone.”

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