McIl­roy eyes re­turn to No 1

New Straits Times - - Sport -

Pa­tience will be a virtue for Rory McIl­roy on Sun­day as he seeks to win the WGC-Mex­ico Cham­pi­onship and pos­si­bly re­gain the world num­ber one rank­ing.

McIl­roy played solidly in Satur­day’s third round at Club de Golf Cha­pul­te­pec, but was dis­tracted by the ad­ven­tures of play­ing com­peti­tor Phil Mick­el­son, who needed sev­eral long rul­ings af­ter way­ward drives.

“It was hard to get any rhythm be­cause Phil was here, there and ev­ery­where, so I was wait­ing a lot,” North­ern Ir­ish­man McIl­roy told re­porters af­ter a steady one­un­der-par 70.

“It prob­a­bly shouldn’t have af­fected me but it did a lit­tle bit.”

McIl­roy and Mick­el­son will start the fi­nal round two strokes be­hind Amer­i­can leader Justin Thomas, and one adrift of world num­ber one Dustin John­son.

If world num­ber three McIl­roy wins, he will go back to the top of the rank­ings as long as John­son fin­ishes worse than solo fourth.

Mick­el­son, mean­while, has his sights set on end­ing a vic­tory drought that stretches back to the 2013 Bri­tish Open at Muir­field.

The 46-year-old was for­tu­nate to be so close to the lead, af­ter a stretch of poor driv­ing and a cou­ple of favourable rul­ings.

At the 10th hole his ball was ruled to have been picked up by a spec­ta­tor, which af­forded him a free drop in­stead of a stroke-and­dis­tance penalty.

At the next hole his drive ended un­der a bush, al­most unplayable, but he was al­lowed a free drop af­ter con­vinc­ing rules of­fi­cial Slug­ger White that he would have been forced to stand on a sprin­kler to take the shot he wanted.

Mick­el­son es­caped with an un­likely par and was lucky to drop only one shot at the 12th hole af­ter find­ing another bush with his tee shot.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.