Buoyed by rabid fan support throughout the week, Rory McIlroy successfully defended his 2019 title with a fantastic final round 62(-8) at St. George’s G&CC and a 19-under total. McIlroy was two shots ahead of Tony Finau and four and Justin Thomas who was in the final trio.
“I feel very good”McIlroy said. “For this Canadian Open, a national championship, a week like the one you had, three of the best players in the world playing each other until the end, trying to win in front of this crowd and this atmosphere… there is nothing more rewarding. what what. »
Rory McIlroy began the week as one of the favorites to win and defend his title at the @RBCCanadianOpen.
— FanDuel sports betting (@FDSportsbook) June 13, 2022
The win marks the Northern Irishman’s 21st title on tour and his first successful title defence. In doing so, he became the first tour pro to defend his title at two different courses (Jim Furyk was the last, winning the RBC Canadian Open in 2006 and 2007).
In 2019, McIlroy shot 61 in the final round at Hamilton Golf and Country Club, heading for another low since the start of Sunday. He went -5 (29) through his first nine holes and then birdied numbers 10-12.
The two-time FedExCup champion said his quick start was key to finding the winner’s circle this week. I made a birdie on the first trou of the day and they approche him on the par-4 du quatrième trou a été, selon lui, le meilleur coup de la journée, même s’il a fait un chip-in pour birdie deux trous later.
“After that, I kept going, and once you see some early birdies, you just think about doing more.”McIlroy said. “I picked up some momentum and followed the rest of the nine holes in the first leg and in the beginning of the second leg”
McIlroy finished with birdies on the last two holes. For his efforts on the 72nd hole, the ropes fell and the Canadian faithful showed McIlroy a lot of love.
“I want to say that the fans here this week have been absolutely amazing.”McIlroy said. “As if it was so good and cool to play in an environment like that. Strong, strong, but respectful. It was really cool. It’s the best you can get. »
“It was a pleasure to be a part of that and I will remember this week and this day, especially today, with very, very good memories. »
McIlroy’s 62 matched the lowest final round by a TOUR winner this season.
And he did it with a substitute caddy.
His old friend, Niall O’Connor, replaced Harry Diamond, McIlroy’s regular caddy, who was home for the birth of his second child.
O’Connor has caddyed for McIlroy once before, at the 2019 DP World Tour Championship, where they finished fourth. Combine that with a first-place finish this week and McIlroy was thrilled with his friend’s performance.
“Whenever he has to replace Harry, I feel pretty confident about it.”McIlroy said with a smile.
With O’Connor only a backup this week, McIlroy had to do the heavy lifting on his own, no pun intended, when it came to determining their distances.
He said he is not used to measuring his distances or taking notes in his notebook. McIlroy admitted that he had “stepped away” from that and trusted Diamond for most of those numbers. It turns out that this change was beneficial.
“(Thomas) and I were having lunch earlier today and I was like, I had my head in my book a lot more today and I was really into my shots and my golf.”McIlroy said. “Honestly, I think it helped me.”
Three years pass, the world changes, but for the RBC Canadian Open champion, history, to the delight of tournament organizers and Canadian golf fans alike, repeated itself this week.
“I think all the ingredients were there”McIlroy said. “There was the golf course. There were the players we wanted to see on the field. There was the caliber of the course, and there was the atmosphere. You had everything you need this week to have a very high level golf event. Like I said, there’s nothing better than being a part of it.”
McIlroy wasn’t the only winner this week, as Corey Conners won his first Rivermead Cup as a Canadian underdog. He finished 12 under for sixth, his third top-10 of the season.
“Obviously there’s another trophy that we’re all playing for here, so hopefully one day my name will be on that one as well.”Conners said, “But it’s really special. »
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