McIlroy shot 42 on the back-nine to leave him more than 10 shots back.
Poor Back Nine Costs McIlroy In Round One
Much like the 2019 Open Championship at Royal Portrush, Rory McIlroy started this week at the BMW PGA Championship as the bookies’ favourite.
After three wins 2019 and after collecting the PGA Tour Player of the Year award, he was competing at Wentworth with huge confidence, however he made a start that was similar to the first round at the final Major of the year.
McIlroy played the opening few holes well, including a quality up-and-down on the 3rd to stay level par. He then eagled the fourth and birdied the fifth to get himself high up the leaderboard.
The wheels started to come off around the turn though as he had three bogeys in a row on 8, 9 and 10 which saw him retreat back to level par. But the worst was yet to come as he was clearly struggling with his swing.
A birdie on the par-5 12th got him into red figures and with two par-5s to finish he must have been licking his chops at posting a good score.
But he played the remaining six holes in five over par to shoot 42 on the back nine and post four-over.
This leaves him at least 11 shots behind Matt Wallace who shot seven-under in the group behind.
Admittedly there are plenty of players left to get out onto the course so the deficit facing McIlroy could get even larger.
No doubt he will be looking to show the same kind of resilience he played with at Portrush where he shot a mesmeric 65 the day after shooting 79.
Unfortunately he missed the cut by one stroke so he won’t want to make the same mistake at the European Tour’s flagship event.
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