Rory McIlroy carded only his second round under par of the year on Saturday at the WGC Cadillac Championship, when he shot a one under par 71. That score included a stretch of five birdies in six holes on the back nine. Consequently, the fact that he was able to put together that string of birdies but only ended up at one under par means he had several very bad holes in addition to that strong stretch. In fact, he carded three bogeys and a double bogey on the day.
McIlroy said that he is in a better place after putting together a string of solid golf shots that produced positive results. “This time last week I was standing on range at The Bear’s Club grinding my ass off trying to find a swing that worked,” he said. “To put it into play and actually see good results, I’m in a better place.”
It’s hard to fathom that the top ranked golfer in the world could possibly have his confidence shaken, but McIlroy also said that his confidence this year is the lowest that it’s ever been. His performance inside the ropes certainly hasn’t been anything to inspire him to new heights, but the fact that he lost that much confidence is surprising. When asked how far his confidence had fallen, McIlroy responded “It was probably the lowest it’s ever been.”
Every golfer goes through stretches where their game just isn’t clicking. If McIlroy is going to be the contender that everyone knows he can be, and do it over the long haul, he is going to have to recognize that he has the talent and a bad rounds won’t change that.
He currently sits at three under par, which is 15 shots off of the lead. He clearly doesn’t have a prayer in this event, but if he can put together a quality final round, it will do wonders for his mental state heading into his next event.