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Rory McIlroy says he’s ‘capable of being the best the player in the world’ after winning 20th PGA Tour title
Rory McIlroy believes he is capable of being “the best player in the world” and will continue to stake his claim on top ranking.
McIlroy won the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Hawaii for his 20th tour title with a six-under-par final round. A double bogey at the par-four last was nothing in comparison to the final-round drama he unleashed at a tropical hot-spot, capturing the coveted victory despite being nine shots behind the leaders entering the final round.
“I firmly believe I’m capable of being the best player in the world,” said McIlroy, who also believes he has become even more consistent over the course of his eight-year career on the PGA Tour.
“I’ve done well at times to get to No 1 but I’ve also done well not to get there. I’ve won, I’ve lost money, lost tournaments. It’s happened in my career, it’s happened in other people’s careers. But at the end of the day what matters is what you do in the majors. If I’m able to win a few more majors I’ll be in a great position to get up there.
“That’s one of the things that makes this circuit so hard. It has the smallest field sizes and the highest breakage which has a huge impact on the winner because it takes 25 events to do what you need to do.”
McIlroy missed a tap-in birdie at the par-four 16th on Thursday but surged into contention again on Friday, birdying the 14th and 15th to grab a share of the lead.
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He was equal with Jimmy Walker at the halfway mark but took a three-shot advantage into the weekend after overtaking Dustin Johnson with a pair of birdies at the par-five 14th and 15th.
The Northern Irishman hit three successive bogeys after the turn but remained in striking distance, giving himself enough breathing room to take his fifth triumph on the PGA Tour and his fourth at Kapalua.
“I don’t think this course has ever suited me,” said McIlroy, whose second victory at Kapalua in 2015 was his second win of the year, also in Hawaii. “This is the first time that my game has been in sync with playing well here.
“I hit a couple of bad shots but holed some crucial putts to make sure I had a good round in the bank and finished on a good note.”
McIlroy’s other PGA Tour wins were in 2011, 2012 and 2015, but he won the European Tour’s Dubai Desert Classic in 2012 and had wins in 2015 and 2016 on the US PGA Tour.
• This article was amended on 27 January 2018. An earlier version said Rory McIlroy won the BMW Championship in September. In fact McIlroy won the FedEx Cup title in September.