McIlroy pleased with round despite early hiccup
Rory McIlroy plays a shot during the first round of the 2016 Dubai Desert Classic at the Emirates Golf Club.
Dubai - The World No.2, eyeing a record-equaling third Dubai Desert Classic, didn't quite have the best possible start in the morning, beginning with a bogey on the 10
Defending champion Rory McIlroy said that a round if 68 was a fair reflection of how he played, considering the start he had, and added that it was a decent launch pad heading into the weekend.
The World No.2, eyeing a record-equaling third Dubai Desert Classic, didn't quite have the best possible start in the morning, beginning with a bogey on the 10th.
And though McIlroy had another bogey after the turn, on the second, his six birdies meant the Northern Ulsterman finished with a round of four under 68.
That left him tied sixth with seven others, including three-time winner Ernie Els.
"I thought I did well, considering the start and having some of the shots I hit throughout the round. 68 was probably a fair reflection of how I played. I don't feel like I could have really gone any lower than that but at the same time, I gave myself enough chances to make some birdies," McIlroy said after his round.
"All in all, a decent day, decent score, especially looking at the conditions. It wasn't the best way to start, bogeying a par 5, and then even the bogey I made on the front nine on the second hole, which is a birdie hole out here. But to bounce back and to birdie some of the tougher holes on the course, I was really pleased with that," he added.
There have been a few changes to the Majlis Course of the Emirates Golf Club and McIlroy felt the course will get even trickier as the week progresses.
"I think with the way the weather conditions are, it's made it quite tricky out there. I don't think I'll ever hit as many bunker shots. There's just balls going into bunker. But it's good. I think aesthetically it looks well and it will probably make it a little trickier as the week goes on and as the course gets that much firmer. Balls will be running through dog-legs and into bunkers and water, like mine on 18 today. It will make it tricky enough. I think it's good changes," felt McIlroy.
Meanwhie, Els, who too shot a four under, said he just loves it here in Dubai.
"I just love it here. Ever since I played here in '93, I just kind of started enjoying the place, and it fits my eye, so to speak. I know we use it a lot, but I just love it here. The course is always in great shape," said Els.
And the 46-year-old predicted a good weekend ahead.
"I love the greens now. Starting to fall in love there again; this is a good thing. A lot of quality shots. A lot of good iron shots, a bit of breeze, kind of fell off now, but I feel good about this week. I want to get a good one in the morning and see what we can do this weekend," he added.