Rory McIlroy, great start in season-opener



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Rory McIlroy, great start in season-opener

Great beginning for Rory McIlroy, shooting an 8-under 64 in the first round of the season-opening Abu Dhabi Championship. In 10 appearances in Abu Dhabi, McIlroy has finished second on four occasions and third three times.

Apart from one missed cut, he has only one finish outside the top 10 — tied for 11th place in 2008 in his first appearance. The four-time major champion endured the third winless season of his professional career in 2020, but shrugged off a fog delay of almost three hours to start 2021 with eight birdies.

Rory McIlroy, statements

“It feels good. I knew 65 is the best I’ve shot here and I’ve shot it a few times, so I thought let’s try to go one better on the next nine and I was able to do that"

One week ago, the Hawaii swing of the PGA Tour ended in a thrilling way with the Sunday of the Sony Open 2021. American Kevin Na (-21) withstood a large group of opponents and triumphed by a single stroke, recording his fifth career victory on the circuit.

At the Waialae Country Club the 37-year-old continued his excellent series early on, which sees him winner of an event in all the last four seasons, and also continues his climb in the ranking where from today he will occupy the 23rd position in the world order of merit.

One week ago, after over 7 years Harris English returned to success on the PGA Tour. The American golfer in Hawaii tok the Sentry Tournament of Champions, the first tournament of 2021, and celebrated - with 267 (-25) strokes - his third career title on the top US men's circuit.

With a birdie at the first play-off hole, the 31-year-old from Valdosta (who had not managed to win since 2013, the year of his double sharp first at the FedEx St. Jude Classic and then at the OHL in Mayakoba) overtook the competition from Chilean Joaquin Niemann, second after a great comeback in the final lap characterized by a partial of 64 (-9), the best of the day.

In Kapalua third place (268, -24) for Justin Thomas, defending champion. Fourth place (269, -23) for Ryan Palmer (who had finished in the lead, with English, the third lap). Top 5 (271, -21) for Xander Schauffele (second in 2020 and winner in 2019), returning after the positivity at Covid, and Sungjae Im. In both cases Rory McIlroy was absent.