McIlroy (66) regains confidence, plays way into hunt


NORTON, Mass. – Rory McIlroy didn’t start his week at TPC Boston looking like the man to beat. After tying for 31st last week at The Barclays, he continued to tinker with his putting at the Deutsche Bank Championship and didn’t sound like he expected a quick change to his competitive fortunes.

But after starting his week 4 over par through his first three holes, the Northern Irishman has now played his last 51 holes in 12 under par to move into the hunt at the second FedEx Cup Playoff stop.

McIlroy followed a second-round 67 with a 66 on Sunday that included a near-albatross at the last after hitting a 4-iron to 3 feet.

“The way I'm looking at it is how good a tournament would this be to win being 4 over through three,” said McIlroy, who is 9 under and was tied for sixth place when he completed his round. “It's a great opportunity to do something that I've never done before.”

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It’s the first time McIlroy has shot back-to-back under-par rounds on the PGA Tour since the Memorial in June and was particularly encouraging considering he’s needed just 51 putts for his last two rounds at TPC Boston.

For a player who didn’t seem to start the week with much confidence it’s been a dramatic turnaround, but when asked how many rounds it takes to regain his confidence, the answer was telling.

“Just one,” he said. “I saw some putts go in yesterday and I'm like oh, this is nice. You start to see lines better and you get into a little bit more of a flow and you're not quite as static over the ball and your thoughts are more fluid and everything just sort of frees up a little bit.”