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Paul Kimmage meets Rory McIlroy Part Two: Battles with Tiger, Portrush collapse and the round he will remember forever

The second installment of a three-part series

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Rory McIlroy with Tiger Woods on the first hole of the final round of the Tour Championship in 2018: 'I wanted to give a really good account of myself. To take the fight to him.' Photo: Stan Badz/PGA TOUR

Rory McIlroy with Tiger Woods on the first hole of the final round of the Tour Championship in 2018: 'I wanted to give a really good account of myself. To take the fight to him.' Photo: Stan Badz/PGA TOUR

US PGA TOUR

Rory McIlroy with Tiger Woods on the first hole of the final round of the Tour Championship in 2018: 'I wanted to give a really good account of myself. To take the fight to him.' Photo: Stan Badz/PGA TOUR

Golf is, and always has been, mostly about losing, but he can count the ones that have really hurt on the fingers of one hand.

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There was the blown four-shot lead at the Masters in 2011; the missed cut in the Open in 2013; the defeat to Patrick Reed at the 2016 Ryder Cup; and that dog day afternoon in September 2018, when he sat in the locker room after the Tour Championship in Atlanta with those god-awful chants beating on his ears: