Rory McIlroy believes he has nothing to prove about his game as he chases a maiden win of the season at the PGA Championship.
The world No 4 heads to Quail Hollow as the only player in the world’s top five without a victory in 2017, with the Northern Irishman looking to avoid a third year in succession without a major title.
McIlroy saw the early part of his year affected by injury and suffered a loss of form, although has shown signs of improvement with a tied-fourth and tied-fifth finish in his last two starts.
I definitely don’t want to be in the mindset this week of wanting to make any type of statement or go out and prove myself, McIlroy said. I’m past that point.
I’ve proven myself enough over the last nine years of my career. Obviously, I wouldn’t have won as much as I would have liked this year, and there’s been a few components to that, injury-wise, changing equipment and stuff. It has been a bit of a transitional year.
But I feel like everything’s settled. My health is pretty much where it needs to be so I just want to go out there and play well this week. It’s a golf course I’ve played well on before.
But I’m definitely not going out there to try to prove anything to anyone. I just want to go out and play my game and hopefully that will be good enough.
McIlroy will once again have best friend Harry Diamond as his caddie, with a decision still to be made on who will take control of the bag on a permanent basis.
This week’s venue has undergone a number of changes since hosting last year’s Wells Fargo Championship, with McIlroy – a two-time winner at the course- looking forward to the new tests.
It used to be you got through the first five holes here at one or two under par and that was a decent start, McIlroy added. Now you get through the first five holes at even par and that’s when the golf course starts to open up for you.
I still feel like the golf course gives you plenty of chances. It’s going to play long this week with the weather. Obviously there’s been a lot of rain over the last couple of days.
It will probably play a couple of strokes harder than it used to play, especially with the par going from a 72 to a 71. But I’m excited to be here.
This has been a week I’ve been looking forward to for a long time and I’m glad it’s here, and I’m glad I’m showing up for this week feeling like my game is in good shape.