HEDDON-ON-THE-WALL, England – Rory McIlroy is planning to play more tournaments next season than he has in each of his previous eight years, the former World No. 1 announced on the eve of the $4 million British Masters.
The four-time major winner is hoping to make up for missed opportunities this season, as well as building a solid foundation to what he hopes will be a productive second decade as a professional.
McIlroy’s year has been curtailed because of the rib injury he incurred at the beginning of the season. He’s missed big stretches at the beginning, middle and end of this year as a result.
“I’m playing a lot next year,” Rory said. “I think the Ryder Cup is going to be my 26th event of the year.
“I’m looking at playing more events next year than I’ve done since my rookie year. I think I played 28 or 29 in 2008. It’s probably going to be something similar next year.
“I feel like I’ve missed it this year. I’ve got a wife that loves to travel. We don’t have kids yet. It’s perfect. I want to play and I want to play a lot. The more I play, the more chances I give myself to win. So I want to take advantage of that while I can.”
McIlroy turned professional in 2007 and made his professional debut in the British Masters. This week’s appearance at Close House near Newcastle is only his second start in the event. The 28-year-old plays next week in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, and then he will shut down to rest in preparation for an intense 2018 schedule.
Part of his offseason includes delving deeper into his lifestyle to see if he can improve his performance levels.
“I’m going to go to Manchester on the 19th, 20th of October and do some testing,” he revealed. “Just basically a full health check-up.
“Get blood done. Get some food allergy testing done. There’s been a couple of things this year where I just haven’t felt I quite had the energy levels. I just want to get some food allergy stuff done, and just use this time to delve deeper into trying to see where I can really make ins and where I can get better and be more disciplined.”
The former World No. 1 wants to compete more in an age when younger players are dominating the game.
“I’m not getting any younger. It’s not as if I’m an old man, but you look at the guys coming up behind me, I want to do everything I can to leave no stone unturned and be able to just make sure that I feel as prepared as I possibly can be going into every event.
“These three months could give me the foundation to have the next 10 years be even better than the 10 years I’ve just had. Hopefully that turns a great career into one of the greatest careers.”