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Rory McIlroy Exceeding His Expectations in Mexico

Rory McIlroy, in contention going into Sunday in Mexico City, is very pleased with his performance.

Rory McIlroy was leading Phil Mickelson, Ross Fisher, and Justin Thomas by two shots after the 2nd round of the WGC-Mexico. He was more than satisfied with his performance, telling the media:

“I would have liked to have said coming in here yeah, I’m going to just get straight back at it and contend for the win or whatever, but I’m sort of a bit more realistic than that. Coming in here this week I definitely would have taken a top-10.”

His second round 65 put him at the top of the leaderboard even though, as he admitted, he missed a couple of his shots.

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“I’m kicking myself because I missed a couple of short ones coming in, but overall I’m in a good spot and looking forward to being in contention over the weekend.”
After round one, he had some kind of illness, but it was gone by the time he teed it up for the next round, as he explained after his round.

“The stomach thing is pretty much gone. I think it was just a 24-hour thing,” he explained. “I sort of stayed in bed for about 14 hours last night and woke up this morning and felt brand new, so that was good. And then, obviously, the rib feels good and everything.”

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The WGC Mexico Championship marks his first event since being diagnosed with a broken rib in January when he withdrew from the European Tour event in Abu Dhabi. It was expected at the time that he would be out for four to six weeks, and that timing has proven to be accurate.

However, what McIlroy needed to do, by his own admission after 2016 was to focus on improving his putting.

“I think it was blatantly obvious what I needed to do after Baltusrol, in terms of trying to fix my putting or to at least address some issues in it,” he said after the Tour Championship.”

Certainly this week shows that all parts of his game are working.  In the first two rounds, he said to media afterthe Tour Championship. In Mexico he hit 71 percent of fairways and 83 percent of greens in regulation.  He hasn’t played enough rounds on the PGA Tour to establish a ranking in the stats categories.

As far as his 65, he could only say that he was surprised the scoring wasn’t better on the course.  However, the adjustment for altitude has been hard to gauge.

“I don’t want to jinx it. Obviously there’s a lot to adjust to with altitude and the greens and whatever, but I guess it is tricky if you miss it in the wrong spots but I haven’t really put myself out of position at all and that’s probably why I’m a couple ahead right now.”
This is the eighth time McIlroy has led or shared after 36-holes of play in a PGA Tour event. Half of those he won. The last two times were the 2014 PGA  and the 2014 British Open Championship.


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