'I'd Rather Have Trophies Than Golf Balls' - McIlroy Throws Away Hole-In-One Ball

Rory McIlroy says he's not sentimental after throwing away the ball he made his first ever PGA Tour hole-in-one with

Rory McIlroy throws away his hole-in-one ball at the Travelers Championship
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy confirmed he threw the ball he made his first ever PGA Tour hole-in-one with away, saying “I’d rather have trophies than golf balls.”

McIlroy scored his first ace on the PGA Tour when he holed out from 214 yards at the par 3 eighth hole in the first round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands.

It’s the second hole-in-one in professional tournament golf for McIlroy after bagging one at the 2015 Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship on the DP World Tour.

Despite the historic moment, though, the World No.3 was not keeping the ball he used as a memento, confirming after his round that he “threw it away.”

“I'm not sentimental,” said McIlroy. “I don't care. I'd rather have trophies than golf balls.”

McIlroy said the hole-in-one was a bonus and helped boost his round after making the long journey from Los Angeles to Connecticut following his US Open disappointment.

“As holes-in-one go, I've had them in the past where it has been like an okay shot and you get a little lucky,” said McIlroy. “That was the best shot of the day that I hit.

“Obviously a bonus for it to go in the hole, but it was really cool. I played pretty averagely up until that point. Felt like that hole in one got me going a little bit. Birdied the next couple holes after that and sort of got me into the tournament a bit.”

McIlroy had a mixed bag of a round with his hole-in-one accompanied by four birdies and five bogeys in a two-under round of 68.

“Hole-in-one and great shots, and I also made five bogeys, which was the sloppy bit of the day,” McIlroy summed his day up as.

“I feel like I didn't - I don't even know if I made five bogeys during the whole U.S. Open last week. I just need to - I think I did, but I just need to tidy that up.

“Making five birdies and an eagle out there would be good enough to be in the Top 5. I just need to cut out the mistakes.”

Paul Higham

Paul Higham is a sports journalist with over 20 years of experience in covering most major sporting events for both Sky Sports and BBC Sport. He is currently freelance and covers the golf majors on the BBC Sport website.  Highlights over the years include covering that epic Monday finish in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor and watching Rory McIlroy produce one of the most dominant Major wins at the 2011 US Open at Congressional. He also writes betting previews and still feels strangely proud of backing Danny Willett when he won the Masters in 2016 - Willett also praised his putting stroke during a media event before the Open at Hoylake. Favourite interviews he's conducted have been with McIlroy, Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, Rickie Fowler and the enigma that is Victor Dubuisson. A big fan of watching any golf from any tour, sadly he spends more time writing about golf than playing these days with two young children, and as a big fair weather golfer claims playing in shorts is worth at least five shots. Being from Liverpool he loves the likes of Hoylake, Birkdale and the stretch of tracks along England's Golf Coast, but would say his favourite courses played are Kingsbarns and Portrush.