A rebuilt and eager Rory McIlroy will be front and center at this year’s Honda Classic, committing to the event that first propelled him to the No. 1 ranking in the world in 2012.
McIlroy’s 2015 season was shortened when he ruptured an ankle ligament in his left foot playing soccer with friends on July 4, causing him to miss three tournaments. In addition, he took nine weeks off to undergo laser eye surgery to correct his vision.
Currently ranked third in the World Golf Rankings behind Jordan Spieth and Jason Day, McIlroy said he feels he is in position to reclaim the No. 1 ranking.
Winning or finishing high at this year’s Honda Classic on the Champions Course at PGA National Resort & Spa will be essential to that aspiration since the Honda traditionally features one of the PGA Tour’s strongest fields.
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“I’m looking forward to getting back to PGA National for this year’s Honda,” McIlroy said. “This is an important first stop for me in the Florida swing of events, and it’s a course that sets up well for my game.
“In such a strong field, there will be a lot of guys hungry to secure a win in the early part of the season, so I have every motivation to get off to a fast start.”
McIlroy said he thinks his vision surgery might improve his game.
“My vision is so sharp,” he said. “It has to help my putting, help me read the lines on the greens, where there is definitely room for improvement.”
Of 2015, McIlroy said he was disappointed, but that was mainly because of the ankle injury.
Last season, despite limited play, he finished seventh on the money list with $4,836,312 and 15th in the FedEx Cup standings.
His immediate goal is to return to that No. 1 ranking.
“It’s a goal to try to reclaim that position as fast as I can,” he said. “If I can get off to a good start, I can get back to No. 1 going into the Masters.”