Revealed: Greg Norman's surprising Rory McIlroy exchange

Greg Norman gave a surprising response when questioned about how he would react to Rory McIlroy completing the career grand slam. 

Rory McIlroy - Greg Norman
Rory McIlroy - Greg Norman

Greg Norman and Rory McIlroy's war of words has been rumbling on for almost two years now, but the LIV Golf boss recently revealed a surprising side to his relationship with the current world number two. 

Since LIV's inception, McIlroy and Norman have been highly critical of one another, pulling no punches in the process. 

Despite McIlroy's best efforts, the pair's relationship hit a low point after the two exchanged messages regarding Norman's famous Masters collapse.

Having watched a documentary about Norman's failure at the 1996 contest, McIlroy reached out to the Australian. 

Despite believing the two might have reconciled their differences during the interaction, it took only a few weeks until the feud recommenced.

Norman, you might recall, accused McIlroy of being "brainwashed by the PGA Tour."

That prompted McIlroy to say: "I'm going to make it my business now to be as much of a pain in his arse as possible."

Since McIlroy made those comments in 2022, he's done just that, taking up the role of LIV's biggest critic.

In recent months, however, McIlroy's stance on LIV appears to have softened following his decision to step down from the PGA Tour's policy board. 

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

With a potential merger between the Saudi Public Investment Fund and the PGA Tour looking more and more likely, McIlroy has been outspoken about his belief that LIV players should face no punishment if they are to return to the PGA Tour.

Speaking to Golf Digest Australia, Norman was questioned about McIlroy and his opportunity to win the career grand slam at The Masters in April. Norman delivered a very measured response that perhaps highlights a light at the end of the tunnel for the pair's relationship.

He said:

"One thing I do is I take emotion out of everything. I'm very good at that. I don't bring emotion into business. I don't bring emotion into anything. If you do, I think that shows the weakness of an individual.
"When Rory missed out on the (2011) Masters when he hit that wayward tee shot on 10, I sent him a message of support afterwards because I felt his pain, and he responded.
"And if Rory wins this year's Masters, I'll say congratulations on achieving the grand slam, right? That's sport and that's sportsmanship, and that's the humility of the game. That's me. That's how I would do it.”

Clearly, the respect shared between the two hasn't been lost in recent years, with sportsmanship still claiming top spot on Norman's priority list.

During his interview, Norman also revealed that he had attempted to sign Hideki Matsuyama during LIV's off-season without success, but despite that, he was quick to congratulate him on his victory at the Genesis Invitational earlier this month. 

Norman was also questioned about a potential return to professional golf for Anthony Kim, to which he responded, “Stay tuned, mate. Stay tuned.”

Since then, Kim has officially been confirmed as a wildcard for LIV Jeddah and will be teeing it up for the first time in 12 years this weekend in Saudi Arabia. 

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