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US PGA 2015: Rory McIlroy's round, hole by hole

Published 14/08/2015

Green for go: Rory McIlroy lines up a putt on the second green in the first round of the USPGA Championship last night at Whistling Straits
Green for go: Rory McIlroy lines up a putt on the second green in the first round of the USPGA Championship last night at Whistling Straits

Rory McIlroy finally got back to competitive golf, beginning the defence of his US PGA title at Whistling Straits.

The ankle injury sustained in a kickabout with his mates, just ahead of last month's Open title defence at St Andrews, didn't seem to hinder Ulster's world number one too much in his showpiece group alongside Masters and US Open champion Jordan Spieth and Open champion Zach Johnson.

HOLE ONE: McIlroy missed what looked a very nervy par putt after a decent long-range birdie effort. +1

HOLE TWO: He had the furniture out, a wood from the fairway to make the green in two. Around 25 feet for eagle, nice pace, looked good but short. A tap-in birdie. Level

HOLE THREE: McIlroy draws his tee shot into the lakeside green but his birdie putt slides past. His first par. Level

HOLE FOUR: He goes for the flag and it's looking good, 12 feet for birdie. It's a right-to-left break and the ball drifts past. It's a par. Level

HOLE FIVE: An incredible hole for McIlroy - sand, fairway, water, green, cup in that order. He chips out sideways from the sand. As for the water, McIlroy rolls up his trouser leg and takes a stance, his ball goes up onto the putting surface leaving roughly 10 feet for par. What a performance. Level

HOLE SIX: Difficult to follow the drama of the fifth. McIlroy has a tricky putt for his par and knocks it home. Level

HOLE SEVEN: Solid drive to the centre of the green and an outside chance for birdie. But it's yet another par for the Ulsterman. Level

HOLE EIGHT: McIlroy sprays one off the tee at the par-four eighth - a desperate lie that could trouble the ankle. He chips out sideways leaving a long putt for par but it comes up a few feet short. +1

HOLE NINE: McIlroy blasts another drive down the middle and rolls in a putt for birdie. Level

HOLE 10: He sends his ball onto the front of the green. Putts for birdie from long range, leaving it five feet short and slotting home for par. Level

HOLE 11: Tremendous approach, leaving an eagle putt from just off the green. Wrong line but then knocks it in for birdie. -1

HOLE 12: The Ulster ace is nice and safe on the putting surface and sinks the ball for another par. -1

HOLE 13: McIlroy's putt for birdie is a bit short but he slots home for par. -1

HOLE 14: Spins his approach back past the flag to leave an outside birdie chance but has to settle for a par. -1

HOLE 15: The Ulsterman, whose group are on the clock for slow play, has a putt of about 20 feet for birdie but it's another par. -1

HOLE 16: Rory keeps up the pressure with a priceless birdie. -2

HOLE 17: The 26-year-old plays a steady par to keep things ticking over nicely. -2

HOLE 18: McIlroy missed the green and finished with a bogey. -1

Belfast Telegraph

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