Was the back-nine meltdown on Sunday by Rory McIlroy at this year's Masters the beginning of the end of his relationship with Chubby Chandler and International Sports Management?
“It might have set the wheels in motion in some way,' McIlroy said, according to the website Irish Golf Desk. 'I was getting advice from left, right and center after the Masters. From people I was close to and from people that just wanted to offer some sort of help.'
The tenor seemed to be a belief that the Ulsterman must take control of his own career, including his development as a golfer and a budding superstar.
“I really had to filter everything through and try and make decisions myself. Sometimes I felt I let people make decisions for me instead of taking my career into my own hands and deciding this is what I want to do, this is where I want to go. That day at the Masters helped me do that,' he said.
From that Sunday, McIlroy made a string of decisions that showed his independent streak: working with putting guru Dave Stockton before the U.S. Open; deciding to pursue No. 1 tennis player Caroline Wozniacki, his current girlfriend; joining the PGA Tour for 2012 and, ultimately, leaving Chandler's ISM for Conor Ridge and Horizon Sports Management.
“Again, even things like ‘I’m going to play in this tournament or I don’t want to play in that tournament’ … just doing things for yourself a little bit. I even said afterwards it was about being a bit more cocky, more selfish or assertive or whatever you want to call it,' he said.
“Making decisions for myself and really putting my golf and my career first. That’s what I wanted to do.”