McIlroy: Why I've committed to the FedEx Cup and Dunhill Links
The last year in which Rory McIlroy didn’t win a tour event?
And that is why the world No. 4 has decided to committed to the FedEx Cup Playoffs, which start this week at the Northern Trust, as well as the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in October.
Shortly after McIlroy’s chances disappeared in another quest for a fifth major championship at Quail Hollow, and a first win of 2017, he told reporters that he was almost certainly going to take the rest of the year off in a bid to let his ongoing rib and back problems fully heal.
Just 10 days later, it’s eyes back on the prize for the Northern Irishman as he bids for a ninth straight season in which he has won at least one tournament.
“The real thing for me was I want to win,” McIlroy said at Glen Oaks.
“I want to win at least once before the end of the year. I’d like to have that feeling again before taking that time off at the end of this year and getting myself right for 2018.
“I haven’t not won a tournament since the 2008 season, which was my real rookie season on the European Tour.”
Even in 2013, when he was struggling to make an impact on leaderboards after a high-profile switch from Titleist to Nike, McIlroy managed to sneak a one-shot win over Adam Scott at the Australian Open in December of that year.
He then took some time out and went on to have his best year to date in 2014, which included a run from May to August in which he won the BMW PGA Championship, Open, WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and PGA Championship.
McIlroy, who missed seven weeks after finishing second at the South African Open in January, and also withdrew from the BMW PGA Championship and the Memorial later in the campaign, added: “I don’t think I’m ever going to get a chance like this in my career again.
“I get this opportunity to revaluate some things, to work on some stuff, and just try and improve and get better.
“I’m going to have to take a few weeks off before I can do any of that, but I feel like it’s a tremendous opportunity to improve as a golfer and my health.
“I’m excited to play these next few weeks, but I’ve already sat down with my team and we already have a three-month plan going forward.
“All we’ll be focusing on is getting me in the best possible shape with my body and my game going in to 2018.”
McIlroy goes into the Northern Trust 44th in the FedEx Cup standings. Everyone in the top 30 qualifies for the season-ending Tour Championship, which he won last year to claim the $10 million bonus.
McIlroy was No. 36 going into last year’s Playoffs and is one of just two players in the 10-year history of the competition to win having started the Playoffs outside the top 20.
“I think we’ve seen what can happen in these Playoffs, and how quickly you can shoot up the rankings with a good week or a win,” he added. “I’m here, and I know I’ve done it before, and hopefully I can give myself a chance to do it again.”