Rory McIlroy ruled himself out of the Open Championship on Wednesday, two days after he announced that he had ruptured a ligament in his left ankle.
The world No. 1 posted a photo of his foot in an air cast on Instagram with the caption: “After much consideration, I have decided not to play in the Open Championship at St. Andrews. I’m taking a long term (sic) view of this injury and, although rehab is progressing well, I want to come back to tournament play when I feel 100% healthy and 100% competitive. Thank you all for your support and best wishes. I hope to be back on the course as soon as I can.”
McIlroy, who became the first reigning Open champion since Ben Hogan in 1954 not to defend his title, did not offer a timetable for his return. He was scheduled to play four events in a six-week span, a run that included two majors and a World Golf Championships event.
The Open released a statement via Twitter that read: “We are naturally very disappointed that Rory will be unable to defend his title at St. Andrews next week. Rory will play in many more Open Championships and our primary concern is for his complete recovery. Everyone associated with the Open wishes Rory the very best as he looks to return to full fitness.”
On Monday, McIlroy revealed that he had suffered a “total rupture” of a ligament in his left ankle while running toward a soccer ball on July 4.
He withdrew from this week's Scottish Open but said that he was taking the situation “day by day.”
McIlroy was the defending champion at the Open and the betting favorite at St. Andrews, where in 2010 he tied the major-championship record with an opening 63. He eventually tied for third on the Old Course.
McIlroy’s next scheduled start is his title defense at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, which begins Aug. 6. The PGA Championship at Whistling Straits is Aug. 13-16.
With McIlroy out of the mix, Jordan Spieth’s odds of capturing the third leg of the Grand Slam have increased from 6-1 to 9-2. McIlroy was replaced in the Open field by Russell Knox.
After much consideration, I have decided not to play in the Open Championship at St. Andrews. I’m taking a long term view of this injury and, although rehab is progressing well, I want to come back to tournament play when I feel 100% healthy and 100% competitive. Thank you for all your support and best wishes. I hope to be back on the course as soon as I can.... In the mean time, come on Andy!!!