Belfast Telegraph

Rory McIlroy's injury could happen anywhere

By Jonathan Bradley

With Rory McIlroy seemingly set to miss next week's Open Championship, the debate over his decision to relax with some five-a-side rumbles on.

When not being called a leprechaun by a news anchor impressively ignorant even by Fox News standards, the World number 1 has copped significant criticism for engaging in a contact sport just 10 days before his defence of one of golf's most prestigious titles was due to begin.

Disappointment at being denied the hyped up battle of McIlroy versus Jordan Spieth at St. Andrews is understandable, but what his detractors think the Holywood star should be allowed to do with his free time remains unclear.

Back in 2003, Colin Montgomerie was also preparing for The Open when a slip on the way to Thursday breakfast ensured that his championship lasted just seven holes.

Away from golf, Spanish goalkeeper Sergio Canizares missed the 2002 World Cup after severing a tendon on an aftershave bottle, Greg LeMond could not defend his 1986 Tour de France title after he was shot by his brother-in-law while hunting and Joel Zumaya, then a pitcher for Detroit Tigers, missed part of the 2006 ALCS with a wrist injury accredited to too much Guitar Hero on his Xbox.

And spare a thought for Jason Pierre-Paul of the New York Giants who last weekend injured his hand on a 4th of July firework after being offered, but not yet signing, a 60 million dollar contract.

The message… accidents happen.

As Luke Donald pointed out, Rory could just have easily injured himself walking down the street. We're not going to stop him doing that, are we?

Belfast Telegraph

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