Rory McIlroy has been shot down several times as he exits Washington Road via Magnolia Lane which has the right to taste a sense of harmony after he left Augusta National this year.
If the last staging of the Masters finally belongs to Scottie Scheffler, it was a tournament dominated by other themes. The fascination with every Tiger Woods move was clear from the depth of the galleries and television ratings. And when those around 18th The green roared through McIlroy’s hole from a bunker, it was the strongest celebration of the fourth day. What Scheffler made his final play played a role in that scenario, but we’ve already been serving a reminder of how much people want McIlroy to regain his biggest winning touch. McIlroy’s own manifestation of emotion resonated; he was given the opportunity to win the Green Jacket while his bunker fired.
Augusta National has provided evidence of how enchanting McIlroy in the full flow is to look at. It shouldn’t serve as a critique of Scheffler – a man in the middle of an extraordinary form – to indicate that he can’t move the needle to something of the same degree as the Master’s runner-up.
McIlroy’s 64 on Sunday was his lowest Masters lap. It was a score that went well beyond the basic stats. McIlroy, who talks about building a positive “memory bank,” has shown that he can tame Augusta. He challenged seriously for the first major of the year; cynics may lament the late nature of this, but McIlroy was ultimately the only real threat to Scheffler. In addition, there is now validation to McIlroy’s recent work, including recognition with his old coach, Michael Bannon.
“It’s not a good feeling that your game is in good shape, you finish 30th every week and say you’re on the right track,” McIlroy said. “Every now and then, it’s nice to get results like this just to reaffirm that what you do is the right things. The only person who beats me in the Masters is the guy who is currently the best golfer in the world.
“I’m on the right track and doing the right things. It was just nice to hear that buzz at a major championship again. It’s been a while since I’ve felt that way. I think last time I was trying to make the cut. in an Open Championship. [at Portrush in 2019]. So this was definitely better than that. I’m excited to move on. I don’t think she’ll put me alone for next year at the Masters, she’ll prepare me for the rest of the year. I feel like my game has been kind of quiet pretty well without the results really showing. ”
This marks a fairly sharp turn. Last year, even at the Masters, McIlroy was clearly stuck in a state of technical flux. “I feel good about where my golf swing is,” he said. “I don’t analyze it too much, I don’t watch the video too much and it feels pretty good. The ball is basically about doing what I want to do more times than not. It’s a good thing.”
Collin Morikawa, the Open champion, was among those praising McIlroy for his fourth time. Morikawa had the best view, as did the 32-year-old playmate. “It was great,” Morikawa said. “I’ve always admired Rory’s game, it’s completely different from mine. I think he drove it 380 yards on the 2nd.nd. “
If McIlroy is to resume his 51-week wait before a return from Augusta, he is likely to be optimistic for the rest of 2022. The Open Championship in St Andrews, a place he loves, is on the horizon. He has no competitive experience in Southern Hills, hosting the U.S. PGA Championship next month, but is typically keen on setting up the course in the major one.
Overall, if not exclusively, McIlroy was hampered by the slow start to the top four individual golf events. The last two he won, the USPGA and the 2014 Open Championships, saw Northern Ireland start with a round of 66.
“Trying to get out of the blocks too fast is when you can start making mistakes, especially on golf courses that are traditional like Augusta or places we play in the big leagues,” McIlroy said.
“It’s nice to start well and be in first place because I feel like the sooner you get up, the easier it is to stay here in certain ways. But at the end of the day, you always have to save your time and play your way up. I always knew what I could do, I played pretty well around Augusta, maybe I just didn’t play four rounds together like that, but I always knew I had the game to win.
“I will have major championships where I will start early and have a chance, like the US Open last year and have things like this Master where I will start at a slow start. But there is always a point in the tournament where you have the chance to make your move. It could be a third time or a second time or whatever. At the end of the day, we’re all going to play 72 holes and the 72 hole is as important as the first one. Just deal with that. ” .
It turns out that McIlroy’s most recent 72nd hole has given him the kind of moment he has shown that he is not an ordinary golfer.