Rory McIlroy is back on the PGA Tour two weeks after his Players Championship victory.
He’ll be playing alongside Matthew Fitzpatrick, Justin Harding and Luke List in the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play event at Austin (Texas) Country Club in Group 4 starting on Wednesday.
McIlroy spoke about the upcoming Masters and the desire to win at Augusta National to complete his career Grand Slam Tuesday during his pre-tournament press conference.
“There’s a difference between a personal desire and a need,” he said of getting that elusive major victory in April. “I would have said a couple of years ago, ‘I need a to win a Masters. I need a green jacket.’ Where now it’s: ‘I want to. I want win it. I’d love to win it. But if I don’t, I’m OK.’ And I think that is the difference.”
He called his Players Championship victory “another learning opportunity.”
McIlroy and Dustin Johnson are 10-1 betting co-favorites to win the Match Play, according to the latest numbers at golfodds.com.
McIlroy could end up playing Tiger Woods Saturday if both players advance out of their preliminary groups. He said Tuesday playing Woods in this event had not been a consideration yet.
He did speak about the recent success of Europeans on the PGA Tour.
“The strength of European golfers right now is fantastic,” McIlroy said. “Something you wouldn’t have seen 20 years ago. European golfers have more of an opportunity to play on this side of the world and showcase what they do.”
McRory was asked about unruly fan behavior and said profanity in the crowd isn’t “cool,” nor are remarks about a player’s family or fans openly rooting against certain players.