It was a two-fer. Rory McIlroy won the Bridgestone Invitational and reclaimed the title as the No. 1 golfer in the world. His dominance at the British Open and excellence on Sunday prove there’s no arguing with his ranking. He’s the best in the world.
“I’ve never won a World Golf Championship,” said McIlroy, via CBS Sports. “That’s another thing. I’ve got three majors but never won one of these. That’s another thing I’d like to knock off the list.”
The invitational wasn’t all roses like his romp at the British Open. He faced a three-stroke deficit in the final round behind Sergio Garcia. McIlroy putt with precision and took the lead with an 8-foot birdie on the 11th hole. He never looked back, holding Gargia and former No. 1 Adam Scott at bay. McIlroy is stringing together some of the best golf of his life.
“What I’m really proud of this week is following up The Open with a performance like this,” McIlroy told CBS’ David Feherty. “I said straight after I didn’t want any letdown. To perform like this I’m pretty satisfied.”
Tiger Woods withdrew after eight holes with back pain from jumping hard into a bunker on the second hole. His departure mixed with McIlroy’s brilliance provides a symbolic transition in the golfing world. As Kyle Porter writes, “I don’t know if it’s a passing of the torch because McIlroy’s flame is already hot as hell, but it’s something meaningful, something special even.”
If McIlroy keeps knocking things off the list, like he says, he’ll be one of golf’s greats.