Sport McIlroy's major Masters build-up

01:45  08 december  2017
01:45  08 december  2017 Source:   Sky Sports

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Ex-European Tour professional Jamie Spence questioned McIlroy ' s decision to play football so close to a major , saying it was "definitely a bit risky". McIlroy has had a mixed season so far, finishing fourth at the Masters in April, and joint ninth at last month's US Open.

Masters is the only Major title the 27-year-old is yet to win. The stress of trying to earn a green jacket has led to McIlroy preparing extensively, and he admits that he is not good company during the build - up one of golf' s biggest events.

Rory McIlroy has added the Honda Classic to his hectic spring schedule next year and faces the prospect of playing seven tournaments in a row ahead of the Masters.

McIlroy has already confirmed he will return to action after a three-month break at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in January, and he will then attempt to win a third Omega Dubai Desert Classic title the following week.

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McIlroy will hope good form in the majors will lead to Ryder Cup success later this summer [GETTY]. Ten Major winners will tee it up today in the 60th running of the event, including one current champion, Justin Rose Ian Poulter last Dubai tee time and now set his sights on Masters .

Ex-European Tour professional Jamie Spence questioned McIlroy ' s decision to play football so close to a major , saying it was "definitely a bit risky". McIlroy has had a mixed season so far, finishing fourth at the Masters in April, and joint ninth at last month's US Open.

The world No 10, whose 2017 campaign was hampered by a troublesome rib-joint injury which has prompted him to take a lengthy winter break, will then have a week off before heading to California to compete in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am and the Genesis Open at Riviera.

McIlroy then returns to PGA National in Florida for the Honda Classic, an event he won in 2012 and was runner-up two years later, but he missed the first stop on the PGA Tour's Florida Swing earlier this year due to his injury.

According to his intended schedule on his website, McIlroy has yet to commit to the following week's WGC-Mexico Championship, but he has committed to play in the Valspar Championship in Palm Harbor, which starts on March 15.

McIlroy is also set to play at Bay Hill the following week in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, although he has not yet added the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play to his intended list of starts.

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Nicklaus, who won six Masters , has talked with McIlroy about Augusta: “I said, ‘Rory, look at the golf course. SHUT UP . Your inner voice, that is. Faldo says McIlroy ’ s adventures on No. 10 four He’ll work out under the supervision of Steve McGregor, his trainer, who helped him build the body we

If he does tee up in the World Golf Championship events in Mexico and Texas, McIlroy will play nine tournaments in a 10-week stretch and then have just one week off before the Masters.

McIlroy needs a victory at Augusta National to join an elite list of players to complete a career Grand Slam of major titles, and he will not be lacking competitive golf ahead of his bid for an elusive Green Jacket.

The 28-year-old has not played since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in October, and is using his lay-off to get himself fully fit while working on the aspects of his game he felt were letting him down over the last year.

In a statement from tournament organisers announcing McIlroy's return to the Honda Classic, the four-time major champion is quoted as saying: "I played for four months without hitting a shot from left to right. My wedge play was not very good. My iron play was not very good. It's so nice that I have this time in the off-season to work on all this stuff and make sure it hopefully never happens again.

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Rory McIlroy bidding to win second straight major at British Open McIlroy has not played competitively since winning U. S . Open last month "As soon as you get that one win, it kind of opened up the door, gave me a lot of confidence

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"I feel I'm a much better player than I was in 2011 and 2012, when I was able to win a couple of majors. I feel I can do better than that in the next 10 years and that's why these three months off are very important for me to put some really good things in place, step away and just reassess where I'm at and where I need to be.

"The landscape of the game has changed a bit since I started to win majors. You have young, hungry guys now who are fearless and playing the game how I basically came out and played a few years ago. It's about gaining an advantage again here and there, just reassessing everything and making sure I'm not leaving any stone unturned and doing everything I can to get back to (being) the best player in the world.

"These three months (off) could give me the foundation to have the next 10 years be even better than the 10 years I've just had. That turns a great career into one of the greatest careers."

Garcia wins Golf Writers' award .
Sergio Garcia capped off his memorable 2017 by being awarded the Association of Golf Writers Trophy for a second time. The Spaniard registered three victories on the European Tour, including a maiden major success at the Masters, with Garcia openly describing his season as the best of his life.Garcia registered wins at the Dubai Desert Cassic and the Andalucia Valderrama Masters either side of his play-off victory over Justin Rose at Augusta, with the 37-year-old ending the campaign third on the Race to Dubai.

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