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Golf Australia Express : Issue 4
repay them for what they have done for me. Just to see the smile on their faces and to know how proud they are makes it all the more enjoyable. After winning the US Open in June, you were quoted as saying you’ll never leave the European Tour. How much pressure is being placed on you to return to the US Tour? Not a great deal. The media write a lot but the PGA Tour are great. I love playing in the US—it’s just difficult to meet the required number of events. Is there a little bit of an ‘Us vs Them’ mentality between the tours? Only at the Ryder Cup. So what are your main reasons for staying in Europe? I love the tournaments, the countries we visit and I have made a lot of friends. I also get home more often. After your Masters mishap, at what point did you honestly feel you had the US Open in the bag and when did you start to relax and enjoy the moment? When I hit it close on the 10th in the final round. I still could afford to lose focus but I felt comfortable. You received a flood of congratulatory messages from fans, family, friends and fellow players. Any that particularly touched you? I wouldn’t want to single a particular one because so many were special. What would it mean to you for Ireland or Northern Ireland to host a British Open one day, and which course should it be at? It would be great. Royal County Down or Portrush are equally great courses. You’re the first in the current crop of star twenty-somethings to win a major. Dustin Johnson’s come close twice. Jason Day’s finished runner-up at two majors this year. But seriously, you’re the most talented one, aren’t you? That’s for others to judge. Tell us about your Ryder Cup experience at Celtic Manor last year. What does it mean to win a team event and how does this feeling differ from individual wins? Being part of that team was incredible. I made so many friends that week. The atmosphere is beyond belief and playing for teammates and the crowd creates a totally different pressure. Onto the important stuff, is it true you don’t drink Guinness? I’m not a great fan of Guinness it’s an acquired taste. I prefer lagers. You’ve had the most recognisable head of hair in golf for a few years now—even your Ryder Cup teammates had some fun with it at a Celtic Manor photo shoot. Ever thought of supplementing your income selling some of your US Open-winning curls on ebay? [Laughs] Do you think I’d get much for them? You never know Rory, it’s a crazy world out there. What about social media? A lot of golfers have jumped onto Facebook and Twitter. Are you into them at all? I enjoy the banter on Twitter, but [I’m] not much into Facebook. Do you prefer team golf to individual golf, and do you think there could ever be a team-golf Tour? I really enjoy both but we obviously play more individual and your career is defined by your individual performance. Who do you like for the Presidents Cup in November? Be honest, you’d love to see the Yanks beaten again. I really don’t mind as long as it’s close and exciting. Will you be watching? Yes, if I’m not playing. Have you any plans to come back to Australia to play? Is there a course you’d like to play? Would love to come back. I love the courses on the sandbelt in Melbourne. OTG “I’M NOT A GREAT FAN OF GUINNESS... I PREFER LAGERS.” CHAT THE WITH RORY MCILROY