McIlroy: “I’ve had plenty of opportunities to win in Scotland and haven’t quite got the job done”

Mark McGowan

Rory McIlroy (Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images)

It’s hard to believe that Rory McIlroy is still seeking his first professional victory in Scotland, but rounds of 64, 66 and 67 see the world number three take a one-stroke lead into the final round of the Genesis Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club.

But to get over the line and register his maiden win in the land of golf’s birth, he’s going to have to endure some typically Scottish weather.

“Just take it as it comes, really,” McIlroy said of his gameplan as weather conditions are forecast to verge on brutal for Sunday’s final round. “It looks like it’s going to be really, really windy, so just try and control my ball flight as best as I can. It’s going to be tough for everyone, just have to remember that, and stick in and try to get it done.”


Understandably, he’s quite satisfied with his efforts over the opening three rounds though admits that he let one or two shots get away towards the conclusion of rounds two and three. “I’m pretty happy,” he told Sky Sports after finishing round three. “There were a couple of squirrelly shots in there, just sort of when the wind got up, it got pretty gusty over the last few holes, but overall again, really solid and I kept giving myself looks and, you know, holed a couple of good ones, missed a couple of short ones, but you know, overall still a great round of golf and I’m right where I want to be going into tomorrow.”

A tap-in birdie at the first was the perfect start for McIlroy and he talked though the process at the Sky Cart. “Yeah, this was a really nice start,” he said, “I actually thought it pitched a little further than that but I’ll take it. Yeah, I hit another great drive down the first and that was a wedge from 136 [yards]. I was trying to split the front bunker and the pin and yeah, it was a really good start and a really good shot.”

Always one of the strongest facets of his play, McIlroy’s long game has been sublime again this week and this was exemplified by a laser-like 5-iron to the par-5 10th that set up a good eagle opportunity that he just failed to take full advantage of.

“This was the best shot I hit all day,” he said, “it was just a tiny little thing in the take-away that I’m feeling and I sort of got that going at the Travelers and it’s just a nice way to initiate my swing and it sort of gets me on the right path and the right angle going back and it seems to be working.”

With four majors on his resume and 15 wins on the DP World Tour, that Rory has yet to taste victory in Scotland comes as something of a shock and it’s something he’s very keen to put right.

“I am excited,” he said, “I’ve had plenty of opportunities to win in Scotland and haven’t quite got the job done. Three Opens – two at St. Andrews and one at Carnoustie – a ton of Dunhill Links as I said yesterday, so yeah, it’s a good opportunity to win in Scotland. I’d love to. It is the home of golf and we come back and play here a lot so it would be great to pick up a trophy.”

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