Justin Thomas "Very Surprised" About Rory McIlroy's Struggles

JT says he knows that Rory is going to work through his slump and go on to win a lot more tournaments and a lot more Majors

Justin Thomas "Very Surprised" About Rory McIlroy's Struggles
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JT says he knows that Rory is going to work through his slump and go on to win a lot more tournaments and a lot more Majors

Justin Thomas "Very Surprised" About Rory McIlroy's Struggles

Rory McIlroy is currently going through the longest win-drought of his career, having not tasted victory on tour since the WGC-HSBC Champions in November 2019.

The four-time Major winner and former World No.1 has been out of sorts recently after missed cuts at The Masters, the Players Championship and the Genesis Invitational in his last six starts.

Rory finds himself down in 13th position in the Official World Golf Ranking, and his close friend Justin Thomas says he is "very surprised" at the Northern Irishman's form.

Despite that, JT says he knows Rory will go on to win more tournaments and Majors.

"Yeah, I'm very surprised. I think we all are," Thomas said of McIlroy's current on-course struggles.

"Rory is one of the most talented golfers I've ever played with, but I think something that is very underrated and people don't realise is how hard he works.

"I mean, he's out there a lot, puts in a lot, a lot, a lot of hours, and he's very similar to me to where he always wants to get better, probably to the point where it hurts him at times, like it does myself.

"I've often spent time with my putting or my golf swing trying to perfect it when in reality I just need to make work with what I have.

"I have no issue with him getting another opinion [teaming up with Pete Cowen]. I mean, that's something that we've always talked about, my dad and I.

"It's like, hey, you don't need to necessarily completely change and go change coaches and trainers, but it's like, hey, if you feel like something isn't working, my dad has always said that to where if we couldn't figure something out in the golf swing.

"We did it with Matt back in the day when I worked with Matt Killen on my putting; if my dad was like, hey, I just can't figure out quite why he's doing this, can you look at this.

"It's just having that second opinion, and sometimes hearing it said a different way just clicks for you, but then sometimes altogether a different coach just might, the methods and theories might make more sense to you.

"He's clearly to do what's best for his game. He's not just doing it because 'I was playing poorly with this coach and I just need to change coaches because I'll start playing better.'

"It's like, he likes what he's saying. But the thing about Rory is I know he's going to work through it and he's going to win a lot more tournaments and a lot more Majors.

"I still and always will have maybe more respect for him than anybody because he's one of the nicest guys I've ever met for how much success he's had."

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Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV