Although he remains confident of pursuing down Brooks Koepka in the top of the world ranks rory McIlroy is decided to finish 2019 using the most significant prize haul in a year of his own career.
McIlroy headlines a field for this week’s BMW PGA Championship in May, and he’s four events this year to meet his lofty goals, remaining, beginning with the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland next week.
His victory in the Tour Championship last month brought him his third title of this season, following his previous wins at The Players Championship and the RBC Canadian Open, and he thinks he could at least match the five victories he achieved in 2014 – that included his maiden win in Wentworth.
When asked about his prospects for regaining the world No 1 ranking for the first time in four decades, McIlroy said:“I don’t know whether that’s realistic, but it is definitely to have closer. Where there is a lot of World Ranking points in China and Japan and Dubai in the end of the year I have got an opportunity over the next few months.
„So my aim is to become closer, just to try and keep progressing and find a few more wins. I feel like I’m playing well enough. The most I’ve ever gained in a season is five years, so I’d really like to equivalent that and try to better that.
„So yeah, it is just keep moving and try to not let my foot off the pedal and finish the year the way I started it, on a very positive note. Then I can really enjoy the off-season, or whatever off-season we have at December and January, go and reset again.“
McIlroy admitted he had to“drag myself off the couch“ last week to get in a practice following a rest after his play-off defeat at the Omega European Masters, that was his seventh event in a penalizing eight-week schedule.
And in addition, he raised concerns about the calendar becoming congested together with the Olympic Games in Tokyo along with the Ryder Cup to take under account.
„It has been quite tough, I’m not utilized to enjoying this much golfing in a brief period of time,“ he added. „You used to play with a couple weeks on, take a couple weeks away, play another couple weeks, but I think I played like 13 tournaments in a 16-week stretch.
„So it’s a whole lot of golf, and it’s something we’re likely to need to get accustomed to. It is the program, especially when you throw at the Olympics a year ago and what and The Ryder Cup else.
„It’s going to be so congested in that middle area of the year. That’s why I needed those 2 weeks on the couch, merely to kind of reset and also get myself in the ideal place mentally to get motivated to move again for this last little bit of this year.“
McIlroy has mixed comments on the new schedule that is major, with only one important per month through to The Open in July, after until golf yields in Augusta National.
„There is so many distinct things in the sport and they are all pulling in various directions, and at some stage or another, something is not quite going to work,“ he explained. „So I think it’s the way it is for a while.
„My only issue is, I really like the sport of golf and as a lover, I’d really like to accompany it to get more than simply the five months annually the majors are in. Try and maintain relevance there.
„But if you take a close look at the manner like the NFL functions in the States, the Super Bowl is in February and also they do not play their first game again until September. Maybe that seven weeks of expectation into Augusta is a fantastic thing for this game. Time will tell.“