Rory McIlroy insists he’s ready to snap out of his slump and battle for Open glory at Muirfield.
The world No 2 has spent the last fortnight working hard on his game and believes he can produce the goods when the gun goes tomorrow.
“I’ve played the course quite a lot over the last 10 days and I feel I am ready to go,” said McIlroy, who has arrived just after 6 am for the past two days. “The game’s pretty good.
“I had two weeks off after the Irish Open to work on it and it feels like I have made a good bit of progress up until now.
“You never know until you get into competitive play. But it seems good and I have been hitting it well in practice so hopefully I will be able to do the same on the course.”
McIlroy was down in the dumps at the Irish Open, confessing that he was a little “lost” with his swing.
But after finding a new driver last week, he’s up for the challenge and excited about battling for his third major title.
Buzzing to get going, he said: “It’s the Open Championship, it’s a major. Obviously there is a different buzz about them but you want to go out there and play your best.
“It’s firm, fast and fiery but very good. It’s still very fair. It is not like you are getting uneven bounces into the rough. If you hit it into the fairway it is going to stay there.
“That’s a good thing and if you can keep it out of the bunkers and avoid the very heavy rough at times you are going to have a lot of chances and it doesn’t look like it is going to be too windy either so you are going to have a plenty of putts for birdies.”
Muirfield is not a traditional out-and-back links and the changing directions of the holes appeal to the reigning US PGA champion.
“I like that you play in different winds and there are a lot of crosswinds and you really have to control the flight of your ball and control the spin of it as well,” McIlroy said. “It’s good, it’s a great test and I think everyone is looking forward to it this week.”
Never a fan of bad weather, McIlroy was happy to see the forecast set fair with no more than a 15mph wind predicted for the weekend..
He said: “If you play solid golf this week you are going to shoot some good scores and the weather seems like it is going to be good for the rest of the week.
“As long as you keep it out of the long stuff, everything will be alright. It’s firm, fast and fiery but very good - it’s not like you are getting uneven bounces into the rough. If you hit it into the fairway it is going to stay there.”