Rory McIlroy shares first-round lead after firing 66 in the Bahamas at Hero World Challenge

The Northern Irishman recovered from a double-bogey seven on the ninth

Pa Sport Staff
Thursday 02 December 2021 23:02
Rory McIlroy recovered from a double-bogey seven on the ninth (Fernando Llano/AP)
Rory McIlroy recovered from a double-bogey seven on the ninth (Fernando Llano/AP)

Rory McIlroy shot a six-under-par 66 to share the first-round lead with Daniel Berger and Abraham Ancer at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.

McIlroy – who had missed an opportunity to clinch victory at the DP World Tour Championship after holding a 54-hole lead – recovered from a double-bogey seven on the ninth to sink two quick birdies followed by an eagle at the 14th to help set the early pace.

Berger could also have seen a better round, starting with four birdies and then an eagle on the par-five 11th, only for bogeys at the next and on the 18th to prove costly for the American.

Abraham Ancer made his move on the back nine (Fernando Llano/AP)

Ancer made his move after heading into the turn at one under, the Mexican rolling in successive birdies and again from the 15th to put himself in contention in the 20-man invitational tournament.

Justin Thomas dropped two shots at the last and so sits one off the pace, alongside fellow Americans Brooks Koepka and Webb Simpson.

Collin Morikawa, chasing victory for the world number one ranking, shot a 68 to sit in a tie for seventh.

England’s Tyrrell Hatton signed for a three-under 69 and is tied 11th, while Matt Fitzpatrick and Justin Rose sit in a group which includes Jordan Spieth at one under.

McIlroy is expecting more from himself when he gets back out on the Albany course.

“I left quite a few out there,” he said in an interview broadcast on Sky Sports.

“I only played the par-fives in even par, and there are five of them so I didn’t take advantage of those.

“But overall my game is feeling much better, which I am pleased with.

“We are all striving for consistency and trying to bring the best out of ourselves each and every time we tee it up.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in