RIO DE JANEIRO – At The Open, Rory McIlroy flippantly said he was going to watch events in the Olympics “like track and field, swimming, diving … the stuff that matters.”
Turns out, he watched golf after all.
Gold medalist Justin Rose said Monday that he received many messages since he put the finishing touches on a historic victory the night before. One of notes came from McIlroy.
“Yeah, I did get one from Rory, absolutely,” Rose said. “He was very, very proud. Said he was pulling for me. He said basically he could see how much it meant to me, and congratulations. He was very complimentary.”
You may recall McIlroy’s comments came during the same press session where he seemed to be in a bad mood and even said that he didn’t feel like he was letting golf down by skipping the Olympics. He even went on to say that he didn’t get into golf to grow the game and doesn’t feel any responsibility to help do so moving forward.
“He made the point that he really wants golf to succeed as an Olympic sport,” Rose said of the McIlroy messages. “He has some of his own personal opinions on it that are very personal to him, and that’s fine. But as a whole he’s very much behind golf succeeding in the Olympics.”
But the bigger point, after the McIlroy mess from a month ago, Rose said with a smirk is that, “obviously, he watched.”