PGA Championship: Rory McIlroy in the Major Mix Despite 'poor' Start, While Tiger Woods Struggles in Valhalla - Latest Global News

PGA Championship: Rory McIlroy in the Major Mix Despite ‘poor’ Start, While Tiger Woods Struggles in Valhalla

Rory McIlroy admitted he had capitalized on a strong start to his race for an elusive fifth major title at the PGA Championship, while Tiger Woods was left to mourn a frustrating end to his round.

The world No. 2, winner of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and the Wells Fargo Championship in his last two starts, continued his upturn in form by mixing six birdies with a single bogey at Valhalla Golf Club.

McIlroy – whose last major win came at this event and venue in 2014 – struggled off the tee but posted his ninth career opening round of 66 or fewer, staying within four shots of early leader Xander Schauffele.

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McIlroy hit the flag from 165 yards out of the rough, setting up an improbable birdie in his opening round at Valhalla

“I took advantage of my luck a little bit,” McIlroy said said Sky Sports. “I hope that in the next few days I can ride it like Rory did in 2014 as I didn’t ride it very well today. My fairway woods were fine. My scrambling and iron game fit together, so if I can do all of that and hit it. Fairways, I feel pretty good.

He then told reporters: “I felt like it was pretty difficult most of the time. I don’t really feel like I left many out there and I thought I got a lot out of my game today.”

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McIlroy was in positive spirits after posting an impressive five-under opening round in the opening round of the PGA Championship

“I had some good ups and downs, the chip-in at six. I had a bit of trouble there on the turn, but I wasn’t really happy with the way I played, but at least I was happy with the result.”

McIlroy continues to impress in Valhalla

Starting on the back nine, McIlroy took advantage of the par-five 10th, adding another birdie on the 13th and then responding to a bogey on the 17th with a sensational par save after par on the next -Five-tee found water.

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McIlroy got off to a dream start in the PGA Championship with a birdie on the par-five 10th

“When I got there, the two ball spotters or marshals said they didn’t really see it [ball in the water] “I couldn’t really hear it,” McIlroy explained. “I went to the other side just to check, but I was pretty sure it was in the water.”

“I dropped down and took my medicine, then made a great up-and-down shot from about 120 yards to make par, which was important after the bogey on 17. That kept the momentum I had going into the next nine.”

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McIlroy found the water from the 18th tee but kept his composure and delivered a dramatic par

McIlroy first hit the flag on his approach to the par-4, setting up the third birdie of the round, then added three more in a row starting at the fifth birdie – including a chip-in at the sixth – to get in touch with Schauffele stay at the top of the leaderboard.

“The ball on one could have hit the flagstick and gone anywhere,” McIlroy admitted. “I could have made it a bogey. If I’m over 10 at 10, I’m under at 2. So it’s a three-shot difference – it’s a big swing.”

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McIlroy wowed the Valhalla crowd with a brilliant chip-in birdie from the sixth green

McIlroy refused to talk about his personal life in his pre-tournament press conference, which came the day after announcing he had filed for divorce from his wife Erica, with the world No. 2 quickly ruling out any similar questions after his opening round.

When asked if it was nice to be able to focus on golf this week, McIlroy said: “It’s always nice to be on the ropes.” A follow-up question was then answered with “Glad to be here.”

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Woods slips back after a costly finish

Woods, who won the PGA Championship at the venue in 2000 as part of the Tiger Slam, had a solid start to the week, going under par with two holes to play, only to finish one with a bogey-bogey finish To achieve one. over 72 and is 10 strokes behind Schauffele.

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A look back at the highs and lows of Tiger Woods’ opening round at the PGA Championship

“I had trouble with the speed of the greens today,” Woods said said Sky Sports. “It was exhausting. I should have been below average that day, but I am above average and we still have a long way to go.”

“It’s a golf course for big boys. It’s gotten longer, or maybe I’ve just gotten shorter!”

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Woods described his opening round at the PGA Championship as “arduous” and admitted he still has “a long way to go.”

Woods is competing in a tournament for the first time since making a record-breaking 24th straight cut at the Masters last month, where he posted rounds of 82 and 77 to finish last among those who made it to the weekend have.

“I’m definitely getting stronger,” Woods added. “It’s just that I don’t play many competitive rounds. Every day is a little different. Some days are better than others. It just is. My body is just like that. Some days it feels great, and others struggle a bit.”

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