World No.1 Not One Of McIlroy's 2020 Goals

The four-time Major winner is hoping that he becomes World No.1 as a "by-product" of good play

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The four-time Major winner is hoping that he becomes World No.1 as a "by-product" of good play

World No.1 Not One Of McIlroy's 2020 Goals

Rory McIlroy makes his first start of 2020 this week in California at the Farmers Insurance Open.

The 2019 PGA Tour Player of the Year tees it up at Torrey Pines with the chance to overtake Brooks Koepka as World No.1 if he is victorious.

McIlroy, however, says that the World No.1 position isn't even on his list of goals this year, but says that he hopes it'll be a by-product of good golf.

"I mean, it didn't get on the list of goals at the start of the year if that's what you're sort of asking," the 30-year-old said of the World Number One spot.

"I guess my thing is when I set myself goals, I set myself goals like I want to be plus-one strokes gained approach play, I want to be -- it's all about the process, it's all about the game, it's all about trying to make improvements.

"If I do that and I achieve those goals, then hopefully inevitably I get to that position.

"That's sort of the way I look at it. It is a by-product of playing consistently good golf and I feel like I've done that for quite a while now.

"So I don't want to say it feels like it's just a matter of time, but if I just keep doing what I'm doing, if it isn't this week, then hopefully it's a couple weeks down the line and I'll have my chances.

"So I'm not putting myself under any pressure this week to get it done. If I play well enough for a sustained period of time, hopefully I get there."

One of the goals Rory revealed that he set himself last year was to win six times.

He has that goal again this year.

The Northern Irishman won five times in 2012 but has never won six in a calendar year - he's hoping to change that in 2020.

"My goals are pretty much the same as every year. I want to play the best golf that I possibly can. I want to win as much as I can," he said.

"I set myself a goal of winning six times last year and I won four, so I didn't quite achieve it but I still had a good year.

"Five is the most that I've ever won and I would like to top that at some point, so I think that six number is still something that I strive towards.

"But there's a lot of stuff that goes into winning those tournaments, so I've got to focus on my practice and what I need to do there, and if I do all that right, then hopefully getting to that six number and winning those tournaments is just a by-product of all the good stuff that I do away from the course."

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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, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four 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 at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-5. 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 HL

Irons: Mizuno MP-H4 3-iron, Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5