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McIlroy storms to Wells Fargo victory ahead of next major bid – Golf News

By admin May13,2024

Rory McIlroy claimed back-to-back PGA Tour titles as he overhauled Xander Schauffele with a stunning back-nine display at the Wells Fargo Championship.

The world number two, who claimed the Zurich Classic alongside Shane Lowry a fortnight ago, started the final round one behind Schauffele but romped home with an inward 32 to win in style.

A six-under 65 saw McIlroy finish 17 under as he triumphed at Quail Hollow for a fourth time and provided the perfect tune-up for next week’s PGA Championship at Valhalla – the scene of his most recent major victory in 2014.

McIlroy said: “Coming into this week, at a golf course I am comfortable with, my golf swing feels more comfortable than it has done. Going to a venue next week where I have won, it feels like the stars are aligning a little bit. But I have a lot of golf to play and a lot of great players to try to beat. I am going into the next major of the year feeling really good about myself.”

Schauffele finished five behind in second after stumbling to a 71, with South Korea’s An Byeong-hun third on nine under after a 66.

McIlroy birdied the first after a fine approach to inside five feet. However, he handed the shot back at the fourth after failing to get up and down from a greenside bunker.

Schauffele’s run of pars ended with a three-putt bogey on the sixth but he bounced back in style at the next, firing his approach to the par five to 12 feet and holing for eagle.

STORMING BACK NINE

McIlroy found himself two shots back when he made par on the same hole after three-putting. However, the Northern Irishman stormed back with birdies at eight and nine before producing an eagle of his own from 34 feet at the 10th.

Schauffele was only one under for the same three-hole stretch to leave the four-time major winner one ahead.

McIlroy found himself two in front as Schauffele dropped a shot on the 12th and ramped up the pressure on his playing partner with a birdie from 13 feet at the short next.

Schauffele failed to save par after hitting his tee shot into rough behind the green on the 13th to leave McIlroy four clear.

McIlroy got up and down from a greenside bunker for another gain at the driveable 14th, with Schauffele missing from five feet to leave his rival five clear.

An eagle from a greenside bunker on the 15th eliminated any prospect of a nervy finish for McIlroy and the 35-year-old parred the 16th and 17th before dropping two shots on the last after hitting his approach in the water.

McIlroy now heads to the PGA Championship at Valhalla to see whether he can keep his hot run of form going and end a decade of disappointment at the majors.

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