Accenture Match Play interview: Rory McIlroy

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February 21, 2013

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RORY McILROY:  I didn't make enough birdies in the end.  Shane had a nice little stretch around part of the back nine.  I hung in there, but I just didn't do enough.

Q.  Anything specific about your irons that may have kept you off?
RORY McILROY:  I've just been missing a lot of them right, just getting ahead of it.  I think it's more a timing thing than anything else.  Everything else was actually pretty good out there.  I just need to go and work on them.

Q.  When your opponent holes out multiple times, does that mess with you?
RORY McILROY:  Not really.  I guess the 12th hole was a big turning point, I thought.

Q.  I'm sure your expectations being the overall top seed were not to lose after round 1?
RORY McILROY:  No, of course not.  You want to try and get as far as you can, but I guess that's match play.  I probably would have lost by more if I had played someone else in the field.  It wasn't a great quality match.  But it would have been nice to get through and just get another day here and another competitive round under my belt.  I'll go and practice over the weekend and get ready for next week at the Honda.

Q.  What did you and Shane talk about down the stretch or after the match was over?
RORY McILROY:  Not much, really.  There wasn't that much chatter.  We were kind of chatting the first few holes and then it was getting pretty tight around the turn, and the back nine there wasn't much talk out there.

Q.  How do you assess your game right now and what do you think you have to work on the next few weeks?
RORY McILROY:  Iron play, I guess.  I missed a lot of irons right.  I felt like I drew the ball really well.  I hit the ball well off the tee.  I just need to take advantage of the driving I've been doing.

Q.  What strides do you think you've made with your new clubs?
RORY McILROY:  I'm hitting the ball so much better off the tee, which is a huge positive.  I'm more comfortable with everything around the greens.

Q.  Do you feel a little bit rusty?
RORY McILROY:  Yeah, I do, I do.  It'll be nice to go play a tournament next week and then Doral, as well.  Yeah, obviously disappointed I didn't get to play a little more golf this week, but I'll practice over the weekend.

Q.  Is this just kind of another example about how unpredictable match play can be?
RORY McILROY:  Yeah, I guess so.  Match play is a bit of a‑‑ it's not a lottery, the best guy usually wins, but if it's over 36 holes or something, it's more of an even sort of keel.  I would have been 1‑down after 18 and had a great chance, but that's 18‑hole match play; you have to get off to a fast start and you have to play well to win.

Q.  When he holed in the chip in front of the grandstand there, did that do anything to the momentum of everything?
RORY McILROY:  It changed it a little bit from going‑‑ looking like I was up there at three feet for par and he was looking like he was struggling for a halve, and all of a sudden he wins the hole, the momentum shifted a little bit.

Q.  How quickly can you fix timing issues?
RORY McILROY:  It shouldn't be a lot of work, I just have to go and look on the range at it.

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