Rory McIlroy eager to be a "man of leisure" over the next few months

McIlroy wants to work on his iron play before he returns to action in January, but is looking forward to some much needed time off.

Jack Seddon's picture
Tue, 17 Nov 2020

Rory McIlroy hopes to improve on his iron play before he returns to the PGA Tour in January, but is looking forward to being a "man of leisure" for the next couple of months and spend some quality time at home.

In search for a career Grand Slam, McIlroy's opening round at The Masters left him with too much to do to catch eventual winner Dustin Johnson, although he followed up Thursday's 3-over par score of 75 with rounds of 66, 67 and 69.

McIlroy did brilliantly to work his way up the leaderboard and end the tournament with a top-5 finish and during Sunday's final round, he never stopped believing that anything could happen, as he got off to a fast start, with three birdies in his fisrt eight holes.

"When I birdied the eighth hole and I got to 11 under, I saw DJ had dropped to 15, and I thought maybe there was a chance," said McIlroy after Sunday's round. "But then the wind got up as we hit the turn, and it was just hard to make birdies.

"I made that birdie on 13 and just had to hang on at 10, 11 and 12. It was that stretch where I was thinking if I could get one out of these, birdie 13, birdie 15, maybe pick up a couple more, but Dustin was just playing such solid golf.

"It was probably wishful thinking on my part on the eighth green! But I hung in there until the end and tried and put up another score in the 60s in pretty tricky conditions."

McIlroy's form has dipped in the second half of 2020 and the Northern Irishman aims to work on his iron play before he returns to the PGA Tour in January.

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"My iron play hasn't been great since coming back from the lockdown," said McIlroy, now down to fifth in the world rankings after being top when professional golf was shut down for 91 days.

"It goes right through the bag. It goes from wedges all the way through to the long irons. I had two five-irons from the fairway on 10 and 11 today, for example, and just didn't hit great shots.

"There's always stuff to work on, but definitely something to work on going into the off season that we have here, and try to come out a little better in 2021."

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The World No.5 will have another chance to win the green jacket in April, but McIlroy will put that to the back of his mind as he enjoys a much needed break and spends time with his daughter.

"I'm just going to be a man of leisure for a couple months," he said. "It's going to be nice, lying by the pool a little bit, get back on the bike, get back on the Peloton. I've sort of given that a bit of a miss over the last few months.

"Obviously I'll get to watch my daughter grow up a little bit and have fun with that. But yeah, I'll try to get away from it, but there's certainly some stuff in my golf game that I want to work on before next year."

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