SAN ANTONIO – This isn’t the first time that Rory McIlroy has entered a tournament at the last minute. No, he made a similar move last summer, adding the Fedex St. Jude Classic to his schedule in advance of the U.S. Open.
The circumstances were similar, but not identical.
In Memphis, McIlroy was coming off three consecutive missed cuts worldwide. He managed to turn it around at TPC Southwind, finishing in a tie for seventh, but a week later he shot 77-73 in his U.S. Open defense.
“I was struggling with my confidence going into the U.S. Open last year, but this year I’m confident about my game, and it’s just about putting the numbers on the scorecard and trying to correct the silly mistakes and just get sharper,” McIlroy said. “That’s the big reason I’m here.”
Despite the spotty play this year, McIlroy has tied for eighth and 45th in his last two starts, respectively, and added the Valero Texas Open, he said, because “I felt like I needed a bit more competitive golf heading into the Masters.”
Mostly, McIlroy will look to improve his course management this week at TPC San Antonio. Putting the ball in play. Missing on the proper side of the flag. Judging the wind. Getting it up-and-down after an errant approach. Eliminating the silly mistakes.
“I feel like all the components are there,” he said. “It’s just a matter of putting them all together.”