Rory McIlroy Aims to Defend Title at WM Phoenix Open
Rory McIlroy is feeling confident ahead of the WM Phoenix Open. The Irish golfer is currently the world number one, and is aiming to defend his title. He has already expressed his ambitions to double his win tally, and believes he is the top player on the field.
McIlroy has achieved victory in his last two tournaments on the Tour – the Tour Championship in August and CJ Cup in October – and is aiming to be the first player to win three tournaments in a row since Dustin Johnson in 2016-17, something McIlroy previously achieved during the 2013-14 season. In 2021, he competed at TPC Scottsdale for the second time in his career, with a finish of T-13. This was during COVID-19, when daily crowds were capped at 5,000 people. Saturday is expected to draw in over 200,000 people, significantly more than usual.
When asked if he feels like he is the best player in the world, McIlroy said “Yes”. He also stated that he has never been as complete of a player as he is right now. He is looking to piece together his game and not play perfect golf to win tournaments.
McIlroy's top rank is under threat from second-place Scheffler and in-form World No.3 Jon McIlroy, however, appears to have become comfortable in a leadership position. McIlroy achieved his 32nd career victory in the Dubai Desert Classic in late January, but the 33-year-old Northern Irishman does not plan to be complacent.
McIlroy is also looking forward to an interesting experience at the WM Phoenix Open, with fans not expecting to watch the golf. He believes it’s a great way to grow the game.
It remains to be seen if McIlroy will come out on top and defend his world number one title.
0. “Rory McIlroy playing and feeling like the world number one ahead of Phoenix Open” The Irish Times, 8 Feb. 2023, https://www.irishtimes.com/sport/golf/2023/02/08/rory-mcilroy-playing-and-feeling-like-the-world-number-one-ahead-of-phoenix-open/
1. ““I've won 30 whatever times around the world” – Rory McIlroy thinks there’s ‘no reason he can't double’ his golf wins” Sportskeeda, 9 Feb. 2023, https://www.sportskeeda.com/golf/news-i-ve-won-30-whatever-times-around-world-rory-mcilroy-thinks-there-s-no-reason-double-golf-wins
2. “Rory McIlroy ‘in a really good place with my game' as Phoenix Open looms” The Arizona Republic, 8 Feb. 2023, https://www.azcentral.com/story/sports/golf/phoenix-open/2023/02/08/rory-mcilroy-game-in-really-good-place-phoenix-open-begins/69886471007/
3. “Paige Spiranac picks Phoenix Open potential winner” Marca English, 9 Feb. 2023, https://www.marca.com/en/golf/2023/02/09/63e51e0be2704e39518b45f5.html
4. “Paige Spirinac predicts Rory McIlroy to win the 2023 WM Phoenix Open” Sportskeeda, 9 Feb. 2023, https://www.sportskeeda.com/golf/news-paige-spirinac-predicts-rory-mcilroy-win-2023-wm-phoenix-open
5. ““As good as I have been ever” – Rory McIlroy embraces World No. 1 title ahead of 2023 WM Phoenix Open” Sportskeeda, 9 Feb. 2023, https://www.sportskeeda.com/golf/news-as-good-i-ever-rory-mcilroy-embraces-world-no-1-title-ahead-2023-wm-phoenix-open
6. “Rory McIlroy says his game has never been more complete ahead of PGA Tour’s WM Phoenix Open…” The Irish Sun, 9 Feb. 2023, https://www.thesun.ie/sport/golf/10195121/rory-mcilroy-never-more-complete-wm-phoenix-open-pga/