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Rory looks to Rocky in attempt to hit his peak


Rory McIlroy. Picture: REUTERS/Matt Sullivan

Rory McIlroy. Picture: REUTERS/Matt Sullivan

Rory McIlroy. Picture: REUTERS/Matt Sullivan

RORY McILROY is considering a visit to the 'Rocky Steps' in Philadelphia as he looks to prove he is fighting fit at this week's US Open at Merion.

McIlroy has failed to punch his weight so far this season, losing his status as world number one to Tiger Woods, walking off the course during the defence of his Honda Classic title and looking a shadow of the player who won five times last season to take the money list titles on both sides of the Atlantic.

However, the 24-year-old insists he is close to rediscovering that sort of form ahead of an event he won by eight shots with a record 16-under-par total at Congressional two years ago.

"Coming off the back of a great year last year, and I guess expecting myself to emulate that or even try and do better, it hasn't really happened so far," the Irishman admitted. "I feel like it's close.

"I've been seeing a lot of positive signs in my game the last few weeks. You always want to go out and play well and contend and win tournaments and I haven't done enough of that this year."

Asked what he would do to relax off the course this week, McIlroy added: "I was half thinking of going to the steps in the city, the Rocky Steps wherever they are and going to run up those."

McIlroy might best be served conserving his energy, however, with the torrential rain which fell on Merion's East Course last Friday and Monday (with more expected today and tomorrow in the shape of thunderstorms) perhaps boosting his chances of victory but making for a long and tiring week.

"There might be a few similarities to the way Congressional played to the way this week's going to play," he added. "It was soft then and it's obviously going to be soft again this week.

"It's great to have my name on that trophy and obviously I would like to get it on that trophy a few more times as well. The US Open's always a very special tournament, a tournament that all the guys look forward to.

"They call it the toughest test in golf and it's a pity that it has rained so much the last few days and might not play as tough as it usually does. But you're still going to have to play some good golf. It's probably going to play into my hands a bit more."