Rory McIlroy had a disappointing start to his quest for a third Players Championship title at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. The Northern Irishman shot a two-over-par 74 on the opening day, leaving him eight shots adrift of leader Chad Ramey. Jon Rahm had a one-under 71, while Scottie Scheffler and Collin Morikawa were one stroke behind the Spaniard’s score. McIlroy blamed the course’s tough rough for his round, saying that it was as “penal as I’ve seen it” in years.
Rory McIlroy’s sub-par opening saw him fall behind Chad Ramey, who shot a sixty-four on his first visit to TPC Sawgrass, and Collin Morikawa. Despite the game’s huge prize money at stake, the $4,500,000 offered to the winner, McIlroy struggled to make an impact, starting with a double bogey and only managing two birdies during the 18 holes. Scheffler finished his nine opening holes of the day, hitting seven pars before finding his form and ending the round four-under after scoring two birdies on the twelfth hole and one on the eighteenth. Rahm wrapped up his initial nine opening holes with four pars, one birdie and four bogeys, before gathering pace and sinking three birdies in his final nine.