Rory McIlroy beaten by Peter Uihlein in World Match Play opener despite late comeback
Rory beaten but not out at the WGC in Austin, Texas
Rory McIlroy has been beaten 2&1 in his opening match of the World Golf Championship Match Play.
World number 63 Peter Uihlein won the second hole and raced into a five hole lead on the 10th.
His nerves were visible though, as Rory staged a mini-comeback with three wins care of successive birdies at 14, 15 and 16. That kept the match alive from dormie five down to dormie two.
The world number seven couldn't hole his birdie effort on the 17th and so succumbed to defeat.
McIlroy, who claimed his first PGA Tour victory in 18 months last weekend, is not out of the tournament yet.
The world's top 64 golfers enter the event and are split into 16 groups of four with round robin matches played before the winners of each group advance to the weekend.
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Jhonattan Vegas (world number 48) and Brian Harman (world number 22) are the other players in Rory's group.
Rory plays Vegas at 5.04pm on Thursday and Harman at 2.52pm on Friday (times GMT). Strong performances will be required if he's to make it through to the last 16 on Saturday.
Belfast Telegraph Digital