In an open and honest interview, Rory McIlroy expressed his sadness at lost friendships over LIV. George Cooper reports from Wentworth

Rory McIlroy has shared five Ryder Cup team rooms with Sergio Garcia and was a groomsman at the Spaniard’s wedding in 2017, but now he says they no longer have “much of a relationship” as a result of his defection to LIV Golf.

Speaking ahead of the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth, McIlroy was asked whether his relationship with Garcia, as well as fellow Ryder Cup team-mates Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter, has been able to survive given the constant disruption and ill-feeling caused by LIV, to which the Northern Irishman revealed their currently isn’t one at all.

“I don’t know. I have no idea,” he said. “I wouldn’t say I’ve got much of a relationship with them at the minute.”

McIlroy was paired with Poulter on six occasions and Garcia five to much success in the Ryder Cup, but now he’s left with nothing but sadness for fractured friendships.

“But I haven’t done anything different,” he added. “They are the ones that have made that decision. So I can sit here and keep my head held high and say I haven’t done anything differently.”

Garcia, Westwood and Poulter will all be sharing the Wentworth fairways with McIlroy at the BMW PGA Championship along with group of LIV golfers, whose participation has continued to aggravate DP World Tour players as well as the circuit’s CEO Keith Pelley.

And despite the fond Ryder Cup memories shared with the LIV trio, four-time major champion McIlroy now believes Team Europe must move on from the likes of Garcia, Westwood and Poulter and instead look to the continent’s up-and-coming talents.

“If you’re just talking about Ryder Cup, that’s not the future of the Ryder Cup team,” McIlroy explained. “The Hojgaards, Bobby Mac, whoever else is coming up. They are the future of the Ryder Cup team. That’s what we should be like thinking about and talking about.”

George Cooper

A golf fanatic his entire life, George Cooper is NCG's man for all goings-on at the top level of the game, whether it's the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA or LIV Golf. He also looks after NCG's Twitter and Facebook accounts. George is a member of Woburn, but is not friends with Ian Poulter.

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