'Golf is a game of integrity and I never try to get away with anything out there.'
That was Rory McIlroy's reasoning as he explained an interesting moment during his second round at the PGA Championship that ultimately cost him a shot, but won him plenty of praise on social media. On the third hole, McIlroy's drive found the rough. An ESPN reporter accidentally stepped on his ball, allowing him a free drop.
However, despite a rules official being satisfied with his new lie, McIlroy felt that it was too good in comparison with the original, and took a second drop deeper in the rough.
The four-time Major champion, who is seven shots off the lead entering round three, made a bogey on that hole en route to a one-under-par round, which left him on -1 overall.
Explaining his decision in a press conference after his round, McIlroy said:
"I just wouldn't have felt comfortable. I placed it, and the rule is try to replicate the lie. No one really knew what the lie was, but if everyone is going around looking for it, it obviously wasn't too good. So I placed it, I was like, that just doesn't look right to me. So I just placed it down a little bit and sort of -- yeah.
"You know, at the end of the day, golf is a game of integrity and I never try to get away with anything out there. I'd rather be on the wrong end of the rules rather than on the right end because as golfers, that's just what we believe.
"Yeah, I would have felt pretty wrong if I had of taken a lie that was maybe a little better than what it was previously."