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Rory McIlroy hits from the sixteenth tee box during the third round of the PGA Championship.
Rory McIlroy hits from the sixteenth tee box during the third round of the PGA Championship.
Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

Rory McIlroy has 'a ways to go with everything' after PGA flop

The 32-year-old Northern Ireland star says his entire game needs work after failing to crack par once at Kiawah Island.
May 23rd 2021, 9:00 PM 5,511 18

FOUR-TIME major winner Rory McIlroy struggled to the finish of the PGA Championship on Sunday, saying his entire game needs work after failing to crack par once at Kiawah Island.

The 32-year-old Northern Ireland star won the 2012 PGA at Kiawah and snapped an 18-month win drought two weeks ago at Quail Hollow, but never found his form on the Ocean Course this time, firing a par 72 Sunday to finish on five-over 293.

“Still have a ways to go with everything,” McIlroy said. “It was a good test this week to see where I was and I still have a ways to go.”

McIlroy said he knew his win nine years ago would mean little this week despite high expectations on him after his recent US PGA Tour triumph.

“I felt like coming in here there was still parts of my game that I needed to sharpen up,” he said. “Those parts were exposed this week in the wind and on a tough course.”

The world number seven, who will next play in two weeks at the Memorial as a US Open tuneup, said he was frustrated on the windy coastal layout by his driving, putting and a poor result on critical par-5 holes.

“The par-5s were a killer,” McIlroy said. “I made six bogeys on the par-5s in the first two days. Especially on a par-72, those are the holes that you have to birdie.

“Even walking off there with pars is a disappointment, so to walk off there with bogeys is obviously even worse.

“I really put myself behind the 8-ball with that.”

McIlroy said his issues are a “trust and freedom thing” and involve faith in his choices,

“I actually felt like I putted OK the first couple days and then just over the weekend I started to miss a few,” he said. “I started to over-read them a little bit and was sort of questioning my reads, a little bit of indecisiveness crept in.”

Asked if his driving woes were about swing or equipment, McIlroy said, “A little bit of both.”

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“I just need to figure out a driver as well,” he said. “I just haven’t driven the ball as well as I know I can for a long time, and that’s really the foundation of my game. Once I’m driving it well, everything becomes so much easier.

“Probably haven’t driven the ball like myself since 2019, so I need to figure it out.”

He couldn’t sort out the problems even in easier scoring conditions Sunday at the windy coastal layout.

“More of the same, very average, sort of can’t really get anything going,” McIlroy said. “The first few holes were playing a lot easier than they have done… just sort of stuck in neutral.”

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AFP

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