Photo Credit: Philip Wilson
On Victory at Valhalla
This weekend witnessed Rory McIlroy consolidating his recent World No 1 status with a dramatic finale at Valhalla. Battling back from his poor start, McIlroy’s victory was by no means secure and at times even seemed doubtful. Watching Rory play the 18th hole in near pitch-black was one of the most dramatic golfing scenes of the year. With the light quickly fading, Fowler and Mickelson allowed McIlroy and Bernd Wiesberger from Austria to join them on the final hole. With Mickelson and McIlroy battling for victory, ‘tense’ would be an understatement. Parring on the final hole, and securing victory, the 25 year old celebrated with a fist pump into the air met with a resounding victory scream (what a way to win).
Finishing on 16-under 168, McIlroy beat American veteran Phil Mickelson with a one-shot victory. A moment he said was “great to have in the memory bank”. Officially winning his second major this year, McIlroy emotionally embraced his Dublin-born caddie JP Fitzgerald and father Gerry.
On Being World No 1
After splitting from high-profile tennis star, Caroline Wozniacki, McIlroy went on to win the BMW Championship at Wentworth – and since then has continued to bowl us over with his performances. Reclaiming his World No 1 status, the player has had an unbelievable year. When mirrored with his winless status this time last year, his progression has been phenomenal. As I mentioned in my previous interview on McIlroy’s win at Wentworth, the world of golf is ready for a new star and it looks like they may have found it. At only 25, his win at Valhalla means he now equals the same number of majors won by Jack Nicklaus at the same age.
What Lays ahead for Rory?
The Northern Irishman doesn’t seem to be content with just maintaining his current standing. Currently playing “the best golf” of his life (and few would disagree), he went on to share his goals of becoming the most successful European Tour player. Wow. With a statement like that you have to admire his confidence.
With the next two big tournaments being the FedEx and Ryder Cup, there’ll be a lot of attention surrounding whether this young star can maintain his status – or if this is just another lucky streak. (Personally I hope he smashes it!) But the bigger picture? It goes without saying that he’ll be itching to secure his Grand Slam at Augusta 2015. If we see Rory McIlroy wearing the green jacket next spring, there’s no doubt this young player will be remembered among the greats.
Alex has authored a guide to mastering the mental game of golf, entitled “Think to Win”. More information about this guide (now available for Kindle) can be found at www.ThinkToWinBook.com
Alex can be contacted directly at firstname.lastname@example.org