Anyone who follows the PGA Tour will tell you how great Rory McIlroy is. At the age of 26, McIlroy already has four major titles under his belt to go along with a long list of accolades and victories on the European Tour. But while the Northern Irishmen is inarguably one of the best golfers on the planet, there is one thing he’s yet to accomplish: put on the green jacket at Augusta National.
McIlroy came excruciatingly close in 2011 before suffering one of the worst meltdowns we’ve ever seen on golf’s biggest stage. Entering Sunday with a four-stroke lead at 12-under, McIlroy triple-bogeyed hole 10 en route to an 8-over 80 final round and a tie for 15th at 4-under. He had three bogeys through the first three rounds before collecting four, plus the triple and a double.
The result was devastating for McIlroy, but that's yesterday's news. Heading into this weekend, McIlroy has his sights set on completing a career major grand slam, and there’s absolutely no reason to doubt him this time around.
Model of consistency in Georgia
Just how solid has McIlroy been at Augusta since he stormed onto the Tour? The European has completed 14 rounds under par at the Masters since that forgettable event in 2011 – more than any other player. Justin Rose (12), Bubba Watson (11) and Angel Cabrera (11) rank behind McIlroy in that regard.
McIlroy, who’s available at a price of +800 in Sportsbook’s Masters outright Sportsbook markets, is in fine form heading into the renowned event. The world No. 3 recorded a hole-in-one on the 16th hole in his first practice round on Monday, which could be foreshadowing of things to come.
Out of the spotlight (for once)
Unlike previous fixtures, McIlroy has been overshadowed this season. That’s likely due to the hype that surrounded him last year in the wake of back-to-back major championships at the PGA Championship and the Open. McIlroy finished in fourth place at 12-under but it was all downhill from there, as he went on to have the most underwhelming campaign of his career.
Players like Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Adam Scott and Bubba Watson are rightfully getting a lot of attention due to their phenomenal seasons in 2015, which is a huge contributing factor for McIlroy flying under the radar.
With the pressure seemingly off his shoulders, this could be an ideal time to back McIlroy, and I firmly believe his time for Augusta glory has come.
Here’s a look at McIlroy’s starry numbers at Augusta over the years.
|2009||-2||Tied for 20th|
|2010 (did not participate)||N/A||N/A|
|2011||-4||Tied for 15th|
|2012||+5||Tied for 40th|
|2013||+2||Tied for 25th|
|2014||Even||Tied for 8th|