Paul McGinley: ‘Tiger’s return will bring out the best in Rory’
Paul McGinley believes Tiger Woods’ return to the field this week at the Memorial will inspire World No 1 Rory McIlroy, who has not had a top 10 finish since the PGA Tour restarted.
McIlroy’s results since the tour’s resumption have not been able to match those prior to the sport locking down in March, when an incredible run of consistency propelled him back to the top of the world rankings.
“He was flying just before the lockdown happened,” McGinley said. “Since he’s come back – whether it’s the lack of atmosphere, whether he’s lost a bit of momentum by not being able to practice a lot during the lockdown – I’m not so sure. He certainly doesn’t have the same bite. We haven’t seen it so far.”
But McGinley reckons McIlroy is a man for the big occasion, and believes Woods’ return at Muirfield Village this week is going to help bring out the best in the Northern Irishman.
“I think the fact that Woods is in the field this week will bring a little more of an edge to him competitively, and I think that’s what we’re missing,” he added. “We’re not seeing the swing has gone poor or the putting has gone poor – he just doesn’t seem to have the edge mentally.
“[But] I think that’s when we see McIlroy at his best, when he’s got the bit between the teeth, when he’s got something to prove, when he’s been discounted.
“We’re coming into some really big events that they’re all going to be playing. That’s why we’re seeing Tiger Woods come out of hibernation.”
Woods and McIlroy will play the first two rounds of the Memorial together along with former World No 1 Brooks Koepka.
Steve Stricker makes Padraig Harrington sweat as Irishman wins US Senior Open
The pair were rival captains in last year’s Ryder Cup in Wisconsin.
Golfers warned of further sanctions if they continue to play in LIV breakaway
The DP World Tour has issued fines of £100,000 and tournament bans to its members who played in the inaugural LIV Golf event earlier this month
DP World Tour hits members who played inaugural LIV series with £100,000 fines
They have also been banned from several forthcoming tournaments including the Scottish Open.
Rory McIlroy not impressed as Brooks Koepka becomes latest big name to join LIV
The world number two labelled the players who have joined the new series as “duplicitous” for the way they have handled their breakaway.
R&A confirms LIV Golf Series players will be allowed to compete at Open
The 150th Open Championship will get underway at St Andrews in three weeks’ time.
Matt Fitzpatrick turns to other major winners for advice on dealing with fame
Fitzpatrick won the US Open on Sunday.
Brooks Koepka set to join Saudi-backed LIV Golf Invitational Series
Koepka’s brother Chase played in the opening event at Centurion Club earlier this month.
Gary Player urges Matt Fitzpatrick to avoid ‘poison’ of modern-day coaching
Player tells US Open champion Fitzpatrick to learn from mistakes of recent major winners, saying: “The teaching today is the worst it has ever been.”
Matt Fitzpatrick’s caddie Billy Foster ready for ‘long party’ after US Open win
Foster won his first major after a 40-year career which includes spells working for the likes of Seve Ballesteros, Lee Westwood and Darren Clarke.
Matt Fitzpatrick backed to become a dominant force after winning first major
The Englishman claimed his first major title at Brookline.