Paul McGinley believes Rory McIlroy is “better equipped than he’s ever been” to finally win the Masters and complete the Career Grand Slam in April.
The 2014 Ryder Cup captain is convinced that the world number two has all the tools to slip into a green jacket this year.
McIlroy has enjoyed an electric start to the season with finishes of 2nd and 1st in Dubai and he tees it up at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am looking for back-to-back wins.
“I think the last couple of years, we have seen the best we’ve ever seen of Rory McIlroy and know that hasn’t culminated in major championship wins,” McGinley said on Golf Channel.
“But all the underlying statistics in his game have never been stronger. His chipping, his putting, his wedge play, all things that potentially were weaknesses in the past, have all improved.
“So he’s in a good place. Winning and playing well in Dubai, I take that with a pinch of salt. That style of golf is something where he’s always played well; he’s won six times over in Dubai, and that style of golf course really suits him.”
Despite stepping down from the PGA Tour players board, LIV talk continues to follow McIlroy wherever he goes but McGinley feels the narrative has rejuvenated him once again.
“He’s a far better player than he has ever been before and I really am very buoyed with the form that he’s shown and underlying statistics in the last two years,” the Dubliner said.
“I think he’s better equipped to face this test than he’s ever been before. He’s in a good spot. I think there’s a bit of inspiration coming from all the talk with LIV going on.
“When his heart is engaged in something, as we saw at the Ryder Cup, that’s when he’s at his best. And he’s certainly engaged at the moment in the game.
“I think the LIV narrative has got to have played a big part in that. So all in all, I think Rory is probably better equipped to win the big one in April than he has ever been.”