Name him the King of Dubai.
After briefly relinquishing his throne finally week’s Dubai Invitational, Rory McIlroy bounced again with a vengeance Sunday, successful the Hero Dubai Desert Basic for a second consecutive yr.
It’s McIlroy’s fourth profession victory on the Dubai Desert Basic, probably the most out of any participant within the 35-year historical past of this marquee DP World Tour occasion.
“It’s actually cool. You already know, I didn’t actually take into consideration [potentially being the fourth player to win this tournament] throughout the course of the spherical,” McIlroy stated of his win.
“It was a very tough day. It was onerous to get it shut and make a ton of birdies… but it surely’s an incredible begin to the season.”
He shot a 2-under 70 to complete at 14-under total, one stroke forward of 30-year-old Pole Adrian Meronk.
His march to victory started on the 351-yard par-4 2nd gap, the place McIlroy launched a excellent drive that landed within the coronary heart of the inexperienced. He then two-putted for his first birdie of the day.
That put some strain on 54-hole chief Cameron Younger, who then held a one-shot lead over McIlroy strolling off the second inexperienced.
Younger then stumbled, bogeying the fourth and sixth holes to rapidly drop to 1 behind McIlroy.
McIlroy maintained his one-shot lead by the point this remaining pairing arrived on the eighth gap, a 459-yard dogleg proper par-4. The Northern Irishman then rolled in a 31-footer for birdie to extend his lead by two. Then, on the ninth, McIlroy holed a 16-foot birdie putt to enhance his lead additional.
“The pivotal level for me got here on the eighth and ninth gap,” McIlroy stated.
“Making two threes there, that type of set me as much as attempt to management it on the best way in.”
Humorous sufficient, his birdie on the ninth can be his final of the day. He performed very conservatively on the again 9, figuring out he had the lead in hand. However he nearly coughed it up on the par-5 thirteenth, the place he duck-hooked his tee shot within the native space properly left of the green.
Rory McIlroy performs his second shot on the thirteenth gap throughout the remaining spherical of the 2024 Hero Dubai Desert Basic.
Picture by Richard Heathcote/Getty Photographs
He even needed to hit a provisional.
“I made that one blunder on 13 and made bogey there however felt like I steadied the ship properly over the previous couple of holes,” McIlroy stated.
“It was a kind of days the place there was not a ton of fireworks simply because the course was so tough, however I held on as greatest as I might, and fortunately, nobody across the high of the leaderboard made a lot of a run.”
After bogeying the thirteenth, McIlroy fell again to 14-under, however completed with 4 straight pars to carry on for the win. And contemplating the place he started the day on Saturday, no person would have ventured to guess that he had an opportunity to defend his title on the Emirates Membership.
McIlroy entered the third spherical ten pictures behind Younger, however a 9-under 63 on Saturday vaulted him up the leaderboard and into the combination.
“I believed on Friday night time, I believed 10-under for the weekend, I’d have a very good likelihood to win,” McIlroy reasoned.
Rory Mcilroy performs his second shot on the 18th gap throughout the remaining spherical of the 2024 Hero Dubai Desert Basic.
Picture by Warren Little/Getty Photographs
“I shot 11-under and ended up successful by one. I’ve performed the sport lengthy sufficient to know the way this stuff are going to go. Fortunately, I performed the golf I wanted to, and it was simply unimaginable to get my fourth win right here on the Emirates.”
The four-time main winner performed terrific as soon as once more within the United Arab Emirates, demonstrating that his present kind is great.
McIlroy’s subsequent begin will come originally of February on the AT&T Pebble Seaside Professional-Am, the second Signature Occasion of the 2024 PGA Tour season.
So, be careful, world; McIlroy is enjoying properly, and he is aware of it, too.
“I do know I’m enjoying good golf,” McIlroy stated.
“There are nonetheless a few misses off the tee left. One obtained me on 18 final week [at the Dubai Invitational]. I missed a tee shot left on 13 right now which type of value me a shot… A few little issues nonetheless to work on, however these weeks are nice. You study a ton from them, and clearly nice to get the competitors and are available out on high as properly.”
Jack Milko is a golf employees author for SB Nation’s Taking part in By. You should definitely try @_PlayingThrough for extra golf protection. You may comply with him on Twitter @jack_milko as properly.