Wed, 03 Jun 2020

McIlroy's wife prompted European Tour compromise

19 Sep 2019, 22:13 GMT+10

Cape Town - Rory McIlroy has revealed how a conversation with his wife prompted a change of heart over his decision to give up his European Tour membership.

It was in November of last year that the Northern Irishman first signalled his intent to give up his European Tour place.

McIlroy needed to play four European Tour events outside of the majors and World Golf Championship events to retain his membership, but committed to just two, saying: "I'm looking out for me."

But a change of heart led to a meeting with Tour chief Keith Pelley and an agreement that allowed him to regain his membership and start earning points for the 2020 Ryder Cup beginning at this week's BMW PGA Championship.

Asked what promoted the rethink, McIlroy said: "My wife. She said to me, 'What are you trying to do, or what sort of point are you trying to make?'

"I knew at the start of this year I wasn't going to play the Irish Open and the rule was that you have to play an extra two events if you don't play your home Open.

"Keith Pelley and I sat down and I said, 'Keith, I can't possibly do that' and it wasn't just me," said McIlroy.

"Henrik Stenson and Alex Noren and the guys from Sweden, the Swedish Open clashed with some of the FedEx Cup stuff. They were in a similar position, as well.

"Keith came back to me and said, 'OK if we make a compromise where instead of playing two extra, you have to play three Rolex Series Events a year' and I said, 'done, 100 percent done'," he said.

"Once we had that conversation, it was totally fine. I think that was a fair deal in the end."

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