After Further Review: What's wrong with Rory?


Each week, takes a look back at the week in golf. In this edition of After Further Review, our writers weigh in on Rory McIlroy's back-to-back missed cuts, Steven Bowditch's bout with depression and the practice of "hide and sneak."

With his unceremonious exit from the Irish Open, Rory McIlroy has now missed two cuts in a row. What's wrong with Rory McIlroy? There are two answers to that question. 1. Nothing. 2. He's Rory McIlroy, which is to say, he's not Tiger Woods. McIlroy has a similar kind of A-game that Woods had when he was at his best, capable of not only winning majors, but destroying the field. What McIlroy doesn't have is Woods' consistency. He's up and down. He misses cuts. Woods didn't. Between 1998 and 2005, Woods made 142 consecutive cuts. His streak ended, coincidentally enough, at the Byron Nelson Championship. Woods spoiled us. He got us used to the No. 1 player always making the cut, usually being in contention. Almost never laying an egg. McIlroy isn't like that, but that's not a fault. That's golf. Sometimes you're the windshield, sometimes you're the bug. Rory is the rule. Tiger, in his prime, was the exception. - Al Tays

What’s a water-logged golf course and a star-studded leaderboard to deal with when you’ve endured everything that has come Steven Bowditch’s way. He’s failed to keep his PGA Tour card in three of his six years on the circuit, needed 115 starts to notch his first victory and, of course, overcame a particularly debilitating bout with depression. So when the Australian was asked if he had any concerns heading into the final round at the AT&T Byron Nelson paired with the likes of Dustin Johnson he didn’t hesitate. “Be nice to learn something new tomorrow and see what they throw at me.” With a closing-round 64 Bowditch answered every challenge and proved that stress is always relative. – Rex Hoggard

Hide and sneak. That’s what we ought to call the little game a staggering number of pros like to play late on a Sunday even when they’re in contention. They hide their eyes from leaderboards and sneak around them because they believe it helps them perform better. Christel Boeljon played the game Sunday at the LPGA’s ShopRite Classic. She ended up missing a 2-foot putt for birdie at the last hole. Her miss took a lot of pressure off Anna Nordqvist, who saw the missed putt playing behind Boeljon. Nordqvist was able to make bogey at the last and still win by a shot. You have to wonder, though, if the players who like looking at leaderboards, and who have trained themselves to perform knowing right where they stand, have a large advantage closing. It’s surprising how many tour pros don’t believe that. – Randall Mell