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McIlroy's putting coach not concerned after early struggles

Rory McIlroy
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PEBBLE BEACH, CA - JUNE 14: The seventh green is seen during a practice round prior to the start of the 110th U.S. Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links on June 14, 2010 in Pebble Beach, California. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)  - 

ORLANDO, Fla. – “I have no doubt we can get it worked out.”

That was Dave Stockton Sr.’s take on Rory McIlroy’s first missed cut as a Nike Golf staff player last week at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, an early exit that featured a last-minute switch back to his old Titleist Scotty Cameron putter in Round 2.

“I talked with his agent this morning, he put 14 clubs in the bag and hadn’t played in two months,” Stockton said on Thursday at the PGA Merchandise Show. “He’s pumped about the clubs. He has no question he can use those clubs, I just think it was a little bit early.”

The putting guru began working with McIlroy last year and said he wasn’t surprised the Northern Irishman made the putter switch.

“When I texted back and forth with him he said he was going to go the first round with it and he thought he’d be alright. It will just take him a while,” said Stockton, who is scheduled to work with world No. 1 early next month.

In fact, despite the focus on McIlroy’s putter switch in Abu Dhabi, Stockton says the more difficult transition will be to the new Nike driver – which the Ulsterman struggled with in the Middle East connecting with just 13 of 28 fairways for two days.

“With his touch he will have more problems with the driver,” Stockton said. “That’s the one it will take him a little bit longer to get.”