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Major obsession could prove to harm golf, warns Rory McIlroy


Upbeat: Rory McIlroy has faith he will end his Major drought
Upbeat: Rory McIlroy has faith he will end his Major drought

By Brian Keogh

Rory McIlroy is confident he'll end his major drought "sooner or later" but fears major mania could be damaging the game worldwide.

The Co Down man outgunned World No.1 Brooks Koepka on Sunday to win the Tour Championship, the FedEx Cup and a $15 million bonus.

But after going another year without a major win, he may lose out to the PGA champion Koepka in the vote for the PGA Tour's Player of the Year award despite out-performing him in almost every other statistical category.

Asked on the eve of the Omega European Masters if winning next year's Masters and catching Koepka at the top of the world rankings were his number one goals next season, McIlroy said: "I'll just do what I did on Sunday. I beat him then so I'll just try to emulate that.

"I think a lot is made of the majors. We play 25 tournaments a year, it's not as if the other 21 don't count. There's big tournaments and a lot to play for.

"The media like to run with the major narrative and the players get into that as well. There is a perpetual cycle of majors, majors, majors."

McIlroy last won a major five years ago and fears the hype around the game's biggest events overshadows the rest of the game.

"We need to be careful," warned McIlroy. "If we keep prolonging the major narrative, it's not good for our game.

"I just think as a whole, it's a slippery slope. You will have golf fans who only care for four weeks a year.

"I want people to be interested in our game every week."

McIlroy has not given up on winning majors, insisting, "sooner or later I'll win them again".

He still has lots still to play for this year and closing the gap that Koepka enjoys at the top of the world rankings is high on his agenda.

"It's a goal to get closer, to keep playing well," he said. "That's my focus for the rest of the year, getting closer to that number one spot."

Belfast Telegraph


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