Rory McIlroy on his health, putter switch, Erin Hills strategy and more

Highlights from Rory McIlroy's U.S. Open press conference Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Rory McIlroy on his health, putter switch, Erin Hills strategy and more

PGA Tour

Rory McIlroy on his health, putter switch, Erin Hills strategy and more

ERIN, Wis. — Following a T-35 finish at The Players, Rory McIlroy took time off to nurse a rib injury and get married. His return at the U.S. Open has included multiple rounds at Erin Hills and a Tuesday press conference.

Highlights from his news conference, starting with his thoughts on Erin Hills:

“It lets players be aggressive, I feel like. You can be aggressive off the tee. You can be aggressive with your approach shots. If you do miss a green, it’s not that you’re going to be chipping out of the thick rough. It goes in these collection areas and runoffs. It’s a little bit of a different challenge than what we faced in U.S. Opens in the past.”

On his physical state:

No limitations on my swing whatsoever. Preparation-wise, I may be — instead of hitting five bags of balls, I’ll hit two, just something like that. It’s not as if I can’t hit balls, it’s just a matter of managing how many repetitions I put through it. I mean not really many limitations.”

On hitting driver and the impact of rain at Erin Hills:

“If I can get that in my hands more regularly, and I think if the field has to hit driver more, as well, that plays into my hands, too. I wasn’t crying when I saw that rain last night and this morning. It’s a long golf course and it’s only going to play longer. That benefits a few guys, and luckily I’m one of them.”

On switching putters:

“I’ve sort of been messing around with it since after Augusta, really. And I went over to Southport to the Phil Kenyon studio, and we just tested a lot of putters, and that was really the one that came out better than the rest in terms of launch conditions and how fast it got the ball rolling, side spin, even face rotation, as well, I felt like I could bring it back to square more often than anything else I had tested. And I’ve had a few weeks to chip and putt around and get comfortable with it. It’s a bit of a different feel than what I had been playing previously. But from what I’ve seen in practice so far it feels good.”

On Sergio Garcia:

“He came to my wedding a couple of weeks after and I hadn’t seen him since, and it was awesome. He was nice enough not to wear the green jacket, just so I could steal the limelight for a day.

“It was awesome. I’m so happy for him. And he’s in a great place right now in his life.”

On his U.S. Open record:

“I’ve had a mixed bag here at the U.S. Open. The wet ones I’ve done all right at, the firm ones I haven’t. Top-10 at Bethpage starting off. Pebble was tough, shot a couple of high scores there. Won at Congressional. And then — yeah, it’s a weird one. I’ve struggled on the West Coast a little bit. I missed the cut at Olympic, and Merion I did OK. My driver face cracked at Merion on the third hole on the third round, so that didn’t help.”

On concerns about picking up lingering injuries:

“I feel with how the modern golf swing is and modern technology and the travel, everyone is going to pick up these niggling injuries, but I feel like I’ve went through enough of them to know what my body can and can’t handle. So it’s just a matter of managing that, yeah.”

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