OLD WESTBURY, N.Y. – At the PGA Championship two weeks ago, where he tied for 22nd, Rory McIlroy hinted that he may be done for the season. It turns out he will, in fact, take a long break, but it’s slated to come after he first makes his run in the FedEx Cup playoffs.
At a Tuesday morning event at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx in which McIlroy hit golf balls from the 200 level toward various targets set up across the diamond, he told ESPN that his plan is to make five starts in seven weeks, and then shut it down until early 2018.
McIlroy has been slowed by a rib injury that first emerged at the South African Open back in January, and he also has dealt with back spasms. His plan to finish out 2017 would be to play the four FedEx Cup events and then to complete the year at the European Tour’s Dunhill Links in Scotland the first week of October, where he could partner with his father, Gerry.
And then it would be, ‘See you in ’18.’
“I feel like I’m going to have a good bit of time at the end of the year to work on my fitness, to work on my game,” McIlroy told ESPN’s Michael Collins. “Guys who play both tours, you don’t get this opportunity to take a couple of months off and really work on what you need to work on, on your game – a real and proper offseason. Like every other sport has, basically. I’m excited for that.”
McIlroy, 28, who is ranked fourth in the world, hasn’t won in 13 starts in 2017, which marks the first season he hasn’t won an event somewhere on the globe since 2008, his first full season as a professional.
He is defending champion of the FedEx Cup, which he won last fall at East Lake when he edged Ryan Moore in a playoff.