Paul McGinley puts Rory McIlroy US Open critic in his place: "That's the difference"

Former European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley locked horns with Brandel Chamblee as the duo discussed Rory McIlroy's collapse at the 2024 US Open.

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

Former European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley locked horns with Brandel Chamblee as the duo discussed Rory McIlroy's collapse at the 2024 US Open. 

McIlroy, 35, appeared as though he was hurtling towards ending his 10-year wait to claim a major championship at Pinehurst No.2. 

Instead the Northern Irishman endured a nightmare ending to the third men's major of the year. 

He missed two crucial putts inside four feet to gift Bryson DeChambeau the opportunity to snatch the major from his grasp. 

A crestfallen McIlroy has now confirmed he has withdrawn from this weeks Travelers Championship and will take a three-week break from the game after enduring 'likely the hardest day' in his 17-year career. 

Now the inquest has begun into the PGA Tour star's latest choke. 

Chamblee reckons McIlroy's golf swing has changed since he captured two majors in 2014. 

He argued on Golf Channel that McIlroy's swing is now more across the line and his iron play is simply not as good as it used to be. 

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

"Don't get my wrong, I love Rory's golf swing," Chamblee said. 

"It's beautiful. It’s beautiful. But he's now finished in the top-ten in the last six US Opens and he's averaging in those six US Opens – because I just looked here in strokes gained approach – about 30th. Guess what they do not do? Win US Opens.

"The guys who win US Opens finish first, second, third, fourth. Brooks Koepka in US Opens – first, second, most greens and best iron shots, strokes gained approach.

"Rory consistently underperforms in his iron play – and that is the most important statistic."

McGinley disagreed strongly and put it to Chamblee that the golfer simply hesitates these days when presented with golden opportunities. 

"He has had chances to win three majors in the last two years," he said. 

"He hasn't lost them because his swing deserted him, he lost them because his putting went slow and when he had opportunities he didn't seize initiative.

"If you hesitate with guys like Bryson around you, who plays with fearlessness, you’ve got a problem. That's what I think is the issue.

"He underperforms in the heat of battle. The first three days he gets in position every single time and doesn't close the door.

"The reason he hasn't won majors is not because his game deserts him on Sunday, it's because he lacks confidence to drive over the line like he does in PGA Tour events.

"That's the difference."

To illustrate his point further, McGinley pointed to the fact only a few weeks before the US Open he obliterated the field to claim the Wells Fargo Championship

McIlroy simply charged to his 26th Tour title at Quail Hollow Club in Charlotte. 

In the process, he wiped the floor with Xander Schauffele to win by five strokes. 

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