The four-time Major winner discusses his emotional missed cut at Royal Portrush in 2019

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Why McIlroy Had “A Few Million Reasons To Feel Better” After Portrush Missed Cut

Rory McIlroy heads into this week’s Open after missing the cut last time out at Royal Portrush in 2019, when he played in an Open Championship in his home country for the first time in his career.

It was such a big week for the Northern Irishman that he chose to skip the Irish Open for the first time as a pro.

He opened up with an quadruple-bogey 8 and then a 78 in the first round at Portrush and went onto to record an emotional missed cut, before bouncing back in emphatic style.

He would win the FedEx Cup and the WGC-HSBC Champions later in the year and was also named PGA Tour Player of the Year.

Rory says it didn’t take him long to get over the week on the Dunluce Links and that he had “a few million reasons to feel better” [$15m worth of reasons] after winning his second FedEx Cup the following month.

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The four-time Major winner even thinks that the missed cut was the catalyst to helping him return to the World No.1 position.

“I mean, not really. I ended up winning the FedExCup in 2019, so it gave me a few million reasons to feel better ,” he joked ahead of this week’s Championship at Royal St George’s after being asked how that week in 2019 affected him.

“I didn’t dwell on it that much. It was tough, but the great thing about golf is there’s always next week. You can always get back on the horse, and that’s what I did.

“I moved forward, set my sights on other things like the FedExCup, like — that was basically all there was left to play for that year.

“I won a World Golf Championship in China. I got to world No. 1 at the start of 2020, and then the pandemic hit and the world sort of changed.

“If anything, it was a catalyst for me to play some of my best golf.

“I left Portrush obviously very disappointed, but by February of 2020, a few months down the line, I got back to No. 1 in the world. So I didn’t dwell on it that much.”