Graeme McDowell might be looking forward to partnering Shane Lowry in the World Cup but he didn’t sound particularly enthused when the subject turned to the question of Rory McIlroy’s year from hell.
The current state of the relationship between the fomer Horizon stablemates, drawn together in the BMW Masters in Shanghai, has been the subject of much speculation, especially when McIlroy was conspicuously absent from his former World Cup partner’s recent wedding.
McIlroy spent the days before the wedding consulting with his laywers before announcing his decision to break is contract with Horizon Sports Management and set up his own company, Rory McIlroy Incorporated, on the eve of McDowell’s wedding when his former agents were boarding a plane for the US.
When asked about McIlroy in an interview pubished by Australia’s Herald Sun yesterday, McDowell had little to say when the subject of his former World Cup partner was mentioned.
“I don’t have any comment. It’s been a long complicated year for everyone (talking about the slump) so I prefer not to talk about Rory McIlroy in this conversation,” McDowell said politely.
Much has been written about McIlroy’s poor season but while McDowell won for the third time this season at July’s French Open, the world No 12’s best finish since then is 12th in the US PGA.
Whether his late season slump has anything to do with “a long complicated year for everyone” embroiled in the McIlroy-Horizon bust up remains to be seen.
But it is clear that McDowell can’t wait to get to Australia for the World Cup.
“We’ll be shorter odds to win the World Cup than a horse with Irish connections to win the Melbourne Cup,” McDowell told the Herald Sun.
“It would be amazing to add winning a prestigious event like the World Cup to the resume. I enjoyed immensely playing at Kingston Heath (at the Talisker Masters) last year and Royal Melbourne is another wonderful course.
“With the Australian Masters played there the week before I’m sure the greens will be rolling unbelievably fast for the World Cup.
“The organisers have been working hard to inject a bit more enthusiasm into the World Cup in recent years which is great. It’s a decent field. (American) Matt Kuchar is back to defend but I understand the decision of players who have given it a miss.
“While Melbourne is a beautiful place and one of my favourite cities in the world, it is a quite a way from the golfing meccas of the US and Europe.”