Rory McIlroy gives defiant response to ‘personal’ question ahead of PGA Championship | Golf | Sport

insists he is ‘ready to play’ at the US PGA Championship just days after filing for divorce from long-term partner Erica Stoll. The 35-year-old is in red-hot form as he prepares to hunt down his first major title since 2014.

News of Stoll and McIlroy’s separation broke earlier this week, with the golfer’s communications team confirming that a divorce had been filed on Monday. They added that McIlroy is keen for the process to be ‘respectful and amicable‘.

The bombshell in McIlroy’s private life hit the news just three days before the start of the PGA Championship in Valhalla. And all eyes were on his press conference on Wednesday, which began with a warning from the media officer that love life questions were off the table.

The four-time major winner was in and out in less than 10 minutes. When asked how he was faring on a ‘personal’ level ahead of the tournament, he responded: “I’m ready to play this week.”

McIlroy landed in Kentucky fresh from winning the Wells Fargo Championship last weekend, carding a six-under 65 in his final round to finish five shots clear of Xander Schauffele.

The world No 2 scooped up four major titles between 2011 and 2014 but he has not won one since. A return to Valhalla could be a positive omen for McIlroy, however, as it was the scene of his most recent major triumph.

But he refused to get carried away with the romantic possibility of history repeating itself this weekend. “Sometimes I struggle to remember what I did yesterday,” he admitted. “When I look back it’s hard to rekindle those memories and feelings. For me, it’s all about confidence and momentum, it’s all about trying to keep that going.”

A day ahead of his opening round at the PGA Championship, McIlroy also discussed the resignation of Jimmy Dunne from the PGA Tour policy board. Up to this point, Dunne had been the driving force behind a framework agreement between the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, but he admitted in his resignation letter that ‘no meaningful progress has been made’.

“I think it’s a huge loss for the Tour if they’re trying to get this deal done with the PIF and trying to unify the game,” said McIlroy. “It’s really, really disappointing. I think the tour is in a worse place because of it.

“I would say my confidence level on something getting done before last week was as low at it had been. And then with this news with Jimmy resigning and knowing the relationship he has with the other side and how much warmth there is from the other side, it’s concerning.”

Source link