LYTHAM ST. ANNES, England – Rory McIlroy was on top of the world a year ago heading into the British Open. He had won the U.S. Open three weeks prior at Congressional, took three weeks off to prepare for Royal St. George’s and arrived with loads of expectations.
Still, he prefers the quiet, less hectic manner with which he’s entered the Open Championship this week at Royal Lytham & St. Annes.
“It’s been lovely just going about my business,” McIlroy said Tuesday. “It's been nice to sort of prepare and definitely not the madness that was going on last year. I've tried to keep it as low key as possible and just go out and go about my business and felt like I've done that pretty well.”
A year ago, McIlroy arrived as one of the betting favorites and got himself into contention after 36 holes. But with nasty weekend weather he shot 74-73 and tied for 25th place. His attitude that Sunday after a poor showing gave the British tabloids plenty to write about when McIlroy said he wasn’t a fan of the weather and that he’d never change his game just to suit an Open.
“Those comments were just pure frustration with having really high expectations going into it, coming off a major win,” McIlroy said. “Blaming the weather, blaming the draw, blaming my luck – basically that was just frustration.
“If it’s like that again this week, you’re just going to have to knuckle down and focus and keep fighting and stay tough and try and shoot a score in bad conditions.”