Friday 27 April 2018

McIlroy: It’s been a crazy week - The Claret Jug has been filled with Jägermeister

Rory McIlroy kisses the Claret Jug after winning the British Open Championship, the third Major of his career
Rory McIlroy kisses the Claret Jug after winning the British Open Championship, the third Major of his career
Declan Whooley

Declan Whooley

British Open champion Rory McIlroy has conceded it has been a crazy week, but is fully focused on completing his grand slam of Majors next year at Augusta.

The golfer has admitted that celebrations have been in full swing since he was crowned champion at Royal Liverpool on Sunday, with his friends and family keen to toast the three-time Major winner.

With media engagements to attend to after his fourth round at Hoylake, McIlroy revealed the party started without him, with the Claret Jug housing an unfamiliar drink.

“My friends and family thought it was appropriate to put Jägermeister in to the jug,” he said on Sean O’Rourke’s Today show on Radio One.

“I had a few sips. But it was champagne last night and that’s the way it will stay.”

McIlroy became just the third man in the modern era after Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus to win three Majors by the age of 25 and has now risen to second in the world rankings.

“It’s been a crazy week and is only just beginning to sink in. To be 25 and have three of the four Majors and have the chance to win number four at Augusta, it’s an incredible point of my career,” he said.

While the aim is to complete his haul of Majors, the Irish golfer is keen to add to his overall tally while he is in such good form.

“The is another Major in three weeks in Valhalla. I’m in great form and I want to win. I want to win as many Majors as possible,” the 25 year-old conceded.

While admitting that at times his stomach was churning on Sunday – “there were guys making a run at me” – McIlroy says his self-belief was key, and will be vital for any future success.

“I have proven to myself this is what I can do. I can win majors, I can be the best in my sport. I want to be the best player in the world.”

McIlroy also told O’Rourke on the programme that he has matured a great deal in the last year and a half with his change in equipment, the calling off of his engagement and dispute with a management company. Golf he says has always steered him through the tough times.

“It has been a big 18 months in my life, with a lot of stuff going on. It’s definitely been a learning process and hopefully it has made me a stronger person”

“One constant has always been my golf. It’s what is really important to me.”

McIlroy also said that the “highest complement” he could receive since his win on Sunday was an email from Jack and Barbara Nicklaus.

“Jack and Barabara sent me a nice note and the Nicklaus’ have always been good to me over the years.”

“It’s the highest complement you can get.”

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