• Looks certain now to defend US PGA Championship title this week
• Has been paired with Jordan Spieth and Zach Johnson
RORY MCILROY | US PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
After coming through a Saturday practice round, Rory McIlroy looks all but certain to defend his US PGA Championship title at Whistling Straits this week.
The 26-year-old, who ruptured his left ankle ligament playing football with friends on July 4, hasn’t played a competitive round of golf since finishing in a tie for ninth at the US Open eight weeks ago, but confirmed he felt little pain when speaking after 18 holes at Whistling Straits – a course he narrowly missed out on a play-off in 2010.
“It was good to get a look at the course,” said Rory McIlroy. “Obviously, I have decent memories from five years ago. Yeah, good.”
“It's good. It's good,” he said when speaking about his injured ankle. “Obviously, getting around a golf course like this, playing 18 holes, it felt fine. I’ve come a long way in five weeks.
"Maybe there's just a little stiffness in the mornings, but it's good" - Rory McIlroy
“This has been the five-week mark today from when I did it. I think maybe there's just a little stiffness in the mornings, but it's good.”
It was rumoured early last week that McIlroy, whose playing status was previously considered unlikely, had booked a Saturday practice round at the US PGA Championship venue, a claim which was denied.
Days of posts on Instagram from the world No.1 followed, with video clips of him in the gym and driving the ball, which were sandwiched by a picture of the bruising on his ankle in the days after sustaining the injury, in which he added the caption saying ‘I’ve come a long way since then’.
An emoji-ridden post which hinted he was in a private jet en route from Portugal to the US on Friday all but confirmed that he was going to be teeing it up, while later that night, the PGA of America tweeted that McIlroy would be partnered with Jordan Spieth and Zach Johnson for the opening two rounds of the tournament, a tweet which the four-time major winner subsequently retweeted.
Rory McIlroy :: How will he get on?
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