• Rory McIlroy drops hint that he'll not be at 2017 Scottish Open
• Says new Rolex Series 'doesn't change his schedule that much'
• The Irish Open has been moved to week before Scottish Open
Rory McIlroy has hinted that the Scottish Open won’t be part of his 2017 schedule.
The 27-year-old, who hasn’t won a major since the 2014 PGA Championship, looks like missing out on the new Rolex Series event at Dundonald Links – with more of his focus aimed at the Irish Open which now directly precedes the Scottish Open.
"I'll play a pretty similar schedule to what I played this year" - Rory McIlroy
When asked if the new Rolex Series – which currently includes the Scottish, Irish and Italian Opens, BMW PGA Championship, Turkish Airlines Open, Nedbank Golf Challenge and DP World Tour Championship – would alter his schedule, the four-time major champion said it was unlikely it would have much impact.
Read more -> Scottish Open in huge European Tour boost
“It doesn't change my schedule that much,” said Rory McIlroy, who last played the Scottish Open in 2014 at Royal Aberdeen. “I'm going to play a pretty busy run up to Augusta, play Augusta, then take a few weeks off and start up again at The Players.
"You're not going to get everyone playing two events leading up to a major" - Rory McIlroy
“I'll play a pretty similar schedule to what I played this year. But it gives guys an incentive to maybe play a little bit more on this side of the pond leading up to the Open Championship.
“There’s some guys that might choose to play the Irish Open and there's some guys that might choose to play the Scottish Open.
Read more -> No fears for Scottish Open after Irish Open switch
“You're not going to get everyone playing two events leading up to a major, but I think it will be great. It gives both tournaments an opportunity to get some of the best players of the world there, and you know, that should be celebrated.”
Rory McIlroy hasn’t played an event directly before a major since the 2014 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, a week before the PGA Championship. He won both tournaments, which also followed his sensational Open success at Hoylake the previous month.
The Northern Irishman was scheduled to play the 2015 Scottish Open at Gullane but was forced to withdraw after injuring ankle ligaments playing football with friends. He also missed his Open Championship defence at St Andrews a week later.
Will Rory McIlroy be a big miss?
Would the absence of world No.3 Rory McIlroy prevent you from going to next year’s Scottish Open at Dundonald Links? Leave your thoughts in the ‘Comments’ section below.