Injured McIlroy in doubt for Open
World No 1 Rory McIlroy could be set for a lengthy lay-off after sustaining a severe ankle injury.
The Northern Irishman revealed the news via twitter on Monday, posting an accompanying picture on Instagram, and said the injury occurred while he was playing football.
“Total rupture of left ATFL (ankle ligament) and associated joint capsule damage in a soccer kickabout with friends on Saturday,” he wrote.
“Continuing to assess extent of injury and treatment plan day by day. Rehab already started. Working hard to get back as soon as I can.”
Later in the day, McIlroy confirmed he would definitely be out of this week’s Scottish Open.
The 144th Open Championship tees off in just nine days time on the 16th of July at the Home of Golf, St Andrews.
McIlroy is the defending champion, having won at Hoylake 12 months ago.
A spokesman for the 26-year-old said he had not yet ruled out competing at St Andrews. A full prognosis would become clear in due course.
European Tour professional Richie Ramsay, however, tweeted: “I had a full tear of ligaments in my ankle not long ago. It takes a lot longer than you think to heal. 3 months til I played after tearing ligaments and even then getting my foot to work the right way was tough.”
If that kind of prognosis proves accurate, McIlroy could be out for much longer yet, and could well miss August’s PGA Championship as well.
Dr Andrew Roche, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon at The Lister Hospital in London, weighed in for Press Association Sport, saying: “If it is a high-grade injury, a complete rupture, there would almost certainly be a lot of swelling, a lot of bruising and it would be painful.
“If it is on the severe end of the spectrum it is highly unlikely he would be playing next week. You could potentially play if it was a mild sprain but it is difficult to speculate.
“Everyone is different and it very much depends on the severity but it could mean three months out of action.”
Paul McGinley, McIlroy’s captain at last year’s Ryder Cup, heard the news as he visited Wimbledon on Monday.
“I’m sure he’ll be very disappointed. I’d like to find out a little bit more because sometimes these injuries can settle down very quickly. But it’ll be a blow not just for Rory but a blow for the game as a whole,” said McGinley.
“He’s performed very well in the two majors so far this year. I know Jordan has taken all the plaudits in terms of winning but two top-10 finishes for Rory in the majors is a pretty good effort.
“I know St Andrews is a golf course he really loves and a golf course that really suits his game. It’s a shame, a shame for the tournament and a shame for Rory if that’s the case.”
Thomas Pieters hopes Abu Dhabi win inspires emerging Belgians
Pieters kept his cool to take victory.
Scott Jamieson to take one-shot lead into final round of Abu Dhabi Championship
There are five Ryder Cup stars within five shots of the Scot.
Windy conditions mean Rory McIlroy is relieved to get off the course
Gusts of up to 35mph made for challenging conditions in Abu Dhabi.
Scotland’s Scott Jamieson claims Abu Dhabi lead with course-record 63
The 28-year-old was one shot clear after the opening round at Yas Links.
Rory McIlroy taking inspiration from Tiger Woods ahead of Abu Dhabi Championship
The 32-year-old’s form since the Ryder Cup has given him “renewed optimism, excitement and anticipation”.
Collin Morikawa using Bahamas setback as motivation to become world number one
The two-time major winner squandered a five-shot lead on the final day at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas last month.
Bryson DeChambeau: I don’t want to be a super-controversial figure
The big-hitting American was given some useful advice by Hollywood star Chris Pratt.
Webb Simpson eyeing Ryder Cup return after winless 2021
The American tees it up this week at the Sony Open, an event where he has a fine record.
Cameron Smith secures record-breaking wire-to-wire victory in Hawaii
The Australian made history at Kapalua with his winning total.
Viktor Hovland happy to be reunited with lost golf clubs in Hawaii
Viktor Hovland was able to breathe a sigh of relief after being reunited with his golf clubs six days after losing them in transit.