Fans Divided Over Whether Rory McIlroy Will Ever Complete Career Grand Slam

A Golf Monthly poll has revealed fans are unsure of McIlroy's chances of winning a career Grand Slam after his early Masters exit

Rory McIlroy and caddie Harry Diamond during the second round of the 2023 Masters
Fans are divided over whether Rory McIlroy will ever win a career Grand Slam
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy missed the cut at The Masters to guarantee his quest for a career Grand Slam will go on for at least another year. According to a Golf Monthly poll, fans are now divided over whether will it happen at all.

The Twitter poll asked: “Will Rory McIlroy ever win a career Grand Slam?” After over 1,000 votes, only 42.1% had answered “yes,” with 57.9% thinking the challenge was beyond him. There is still time to vote in the poll and have your say...

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After winning the US Open in 2011, McIlroy went on to claim two victories in the PGA Championship and one in the Open Championship by 2014. Since then, it has looked like a matter of if, not when he would add The Masters to his list of Major wins.

After McIlroy rallied superbly in the final round of the 2022 Masters, there were high hopes that he’d finally claim his first Augusta National victory in 2023.  After all, that runner-up finish behind Scottie Scheffler was the closest he had come to wearing the Green Jacket among seven top-10 finishes in his 14 Masters appearances up to that point. 

Unfortunately, for McIlroy, his 15th appearance didn’t go anything like as well as the 33-year-old, or many others, had anticipated. There were encouraging signs in the build-up to the tournament, with reports that he had driven beautifully during a visit to Augusta National for practice rounds after an equipment change where he used a shorter drive shaft.

Then there was the fact that, even though he had endured a couple of indifferent results since the turn of the year, the World No.3’s form seemed strong enough to launch a serious challenge, particularly after his tie for second in the Arnold Palmer Invitational and a third-place finish in the WGC-Match Play the month before the tournament. 

Even during his first round, there wasn’t any dire need to reassess expectations. Yes, he eventually completed a somewhat underwhelming even-par 72, but his in-play interview had been upbeat enough to suggest this was just another slow start for McIlroy, and he would only climb the leaderboard from there. Those expectations proved as wide of the mark as some of McIlroy’s play in the second round after his five-over 77 saw him out of the tournament before Moving Day.

Rory McIlroy reacts after missing a putt on the 18th green in the second round of the 2023 Masters

Rory McIlroy missed the cut at the 2023 Masters

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Many have observed that Augusta National suits McIlroy’s game perfectly, and those close calls certainly lend credence to the notion that his struggles to win there are more psychological than because of an inability to master the course.

Before the tournament, five-time Masters winner Tiger Woods was also adamant it’s only a matter of time before McIlroy gets over the line. He said: “He’s been there, last year he made a great run, put himself there. But I think it’s just a matter of time, whether it’s this year or next or whenever it comes, he will get it done and have a career Grand Slam. It’s just what year it will be, it will definitely happen.”

For McIlroy’s sake, it is to be hoped Woods is right. As the years go by, McIlroy remains one of the best players around and has been almost ever-present in the world’s top 10 for over 13 years.

The wins keep coming, too, most recently in the Dubai Desert Classic at the start of 2023. There’s nothing to suggest there won’t be plenty more, either.

However, without the one victory he surely craves above all others, as McIlroy grows older, the percentage of people likely to opt for “no” to the question of whether he will ever win a career Grand Slam is only likely to increase.

Mike Hall
News Writer

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.