McIlroy back for 'unfinished business' at Honda Classic

Mon Feb 3, 2014 4:40pm EST
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(Reuters) - One of Rory McIlroy's lowest points during a frustrating 2013 campaign came at the Honda Classic in Florida but the Northern Irishman is looking forward to returning to "one of my favorite events" for this year's edition.

McIlroy on Monday announced his intention to compete from February 27-March 2 at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens where he won the tournament in 2012 after holding off a final-round charge from Tiger Woods to take over as world number one.

"I really can't wait to get back to The Honda," twice major winner McIlroy, now ranked seventh, said in a statement. "It is one of my favorite events of the year, and winning in 2012 was an important landmark in my career.

"Having a place in Palm Beach now also gives the tournament a kind of special feeling - nearly like a home event. Last year, admittedly, I had a tough week; a forgettable week.

"I guess I let frustrations get the better of me and perhaps should have adopted a more mature approach."

Twelve months ago, McIlroy withdrew from the PGA Tour event after eight holes of his second round, initially saying he was in a "bad place mentally" and then later citing toothache.

His actions earned him widespread criticism by his peers, golfing great Jack Nicklaus saying the Northern Irishman had been wrong to walk off the course and that if he "had thought about it for five minutes, he wouldn't have done it."


McIlroy had clearly been frustrated by a poor start to his 2013 season, having played just four full professional rounds in three months.   Continued...

Rory Mcilroy of Northern Ireland reacts after putting on the 14th green during the second day of the Hong Kong Open golf tournament at the Hong Kong golf club December 2, 2011. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu