As Rory McIlroy no doubt deservedly nurses a swollen head in the aftermath of winning his fourth Major at last week’s US PGA Championship, europeantour.com takes a look at the global media reaction.
McIlroy’s third tournament triumph in as many attempts cemented his place atop both The Race to Dubai and the Official World Golf Ranking.
By clinching his second Major of the year, following his triumph at The Open Championship in July, the Northern Irishman became the third youngest player to win four Majors and only the fourth to win The Open and the US PGA in a calendar year. Here’s what some of the wider media had to say on this momentous feat:
Global Golf Post’s Ron Green JR. surmises that, “The only question now about Rory McIlroy is how far he goes and, if we're fortunate, we have another 20 years or so to find out.”
Rex Hoggard of the Golf Channel, reflects that, “There’s been a reluctance in many circles to label the Northern Irishman Woods’ successor and subject him to the inherent dangers of unrealistic expectations, but with a closing 68 at Valhalla Golf Club there is no more ducking the question.”
Whilst after another week in which 14-time Major Champion Tiger Woods struggled, Ewan Murray, from The Guardian asserts: “McIlroy is better placed to hunt down Nicklaus’s Majors record of 18 than a diminished Woods is, regardless of the current gap between their totals.”
James Corrigan, writing for The Telegraph, pinpoints characteristics in the US PGA Champion reminiscent of Mr Woods, noting, “Rory McIlroy proved he is so much more than a front-runner here as he won an incredible USPGA Championship to become the first back-to-back major winner in six years.” Irishman, Pádraig Harrington was the last to mirror the task in 2008.
The New York Time’s Bill Pennington highlighted the spectacle which Sunday’s golf produced: “The previous three major championships this year had been notable for their lack of drama as the eventual winners took comfortable leads into the final hours and cruised to weighty if wearisome victories. By contrast, the final round of the P.G.A. Championship was a taut battle more like a heavyweight prizefight. Four men climbed into the ring and exchanged birdies at a sizzling pace in close quarters.”
It was an eagle at the tenth which was decisive to a shift in momentum according to The Phil Casey, writing in the Independent: “Just when the world No 1 looked to be fading, an eagle on the turn saw him shoot back into contention before he sealed his win with a birdie at 17.”
Yet, despite an intense contest, BBC Sport’s Jonathan Jurejko acknowledged that golfing etiquette did not suffer at the expense of competition. “McIlroy would not have finished the day were it not for a fine display of sportsmanship from Mickelson and Fowler. The pair were in the group ahead and allowed him to play up behind them as he tried to beat the fading light following the rain delay, then waited on the side of the 18th green to applaud the new champion.”