Sports / Golf

Rory not resting on laurels

By Reuters in Los Angeles (China Daily) Updated: 2014-07-31 07:18

Rory McIlroy embellished his status as one of golf's best players with his wire-to-wire win at the British Open earlier this month, but has put that behind him as he strives to achieve further goals before the end of the year.

The Northern Irishman has made a habit of stringing together red-hot runs during his burgeoning career and has set his sights on clinching a maiden World Golf Championships crown at this week's WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio.

"I've obviously had a bit of time to reflect after the (British) Open and everything, but just decided I wanted to move on and move forward," the world No 2 said at Firestone Country Club on Tuesday.

"There's a lot of big tournaments left this year, a lot of golf left to play and a lot of things I still want to achieve. So I definitely wasn't going to dwell on what I'd done at Hoylake (venue of the British Open).

"I want to move on and start by playing well again this week. I've never won a World Golf Championship. I've got three majors but never won one of these, so there's a lot of stuff still to play for."

Though McIlroy has suffered a few lapses in form, most notably last year when he struggled to adapt after changing his equipment manufacturer in January and having to cope with legal distractions, he has already achieved more than most of his peers.

Victories at the 2011 US Open and the 2012 PGA Championship gave him two major titles to cherish by the age of 24 and he followed up on both successes brilliantly.

"I always feel like winning a major is almost a springboard in a way," said the 25-year-old, who has already triumphed seven times on the PGA Tour. "Especially after the (2012) PGA (Championship) at Kiawah, I didn't want to rest on that. I'd already had a pretty good year, but I wanted to just keep going.

"I set myself a goal. I want to win the FedExCup. I want to win the Race to Dubai. I want to keep that No 1 position in the world.

"Every time you have success, you need to reassess your goals because it's only halfway, two-thirds through the season, and a lot of the goals that I set myself for the start of the year I've achieved already."

McIlroy said he will only be ready to savor his successes once the season is over.

"You've got to keep moving forward and keep thinking about what you want to achieve from now until the end of the year," he said. "And then at the end of the year you can really reflect on everything you've done and enjoy it.

"So it's a springboard. I feel like I've got a lot of momentum and I can carry that through to the end of the year. Hopefully ride that and play some really good golf, similar to what you saw at Hoylake."

McIlroy is scheduled to tee off with American world No 6 Matt Kuchar in Thursday's opening round at Firestone, one of his favorite venues on the PGA Tour.

"This is one of the best courses we play all year," said McIlroy, who recorded successive top-10 finishes at Firestone from 2010-12. "I really look forward to this week.

"All the players really enjoy it because of the atmosphere, because you're guaranteed four days of golf. It's on a great course and guys just enjoy coming here and playing. It's a good test."

(China Daily 07/31/2014 page24)

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