• BMW PGA Championship

McIlroy puts Wozniacki split behind him with 68

ESPN staff
May 22, 2014
Rory McIlroy celebrates with Ernie Els after holing out for eagle at the seventh from 130 yards © Getty Images

Rory McIlroy managed to put his personal problems behind him on Thursday as he hit an opening-round 68 at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.

Having announced his split from his fiancee, former tennis world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, on Wednesday, McIlroy was back in action 24 hours later.

He negotiated a tricky weather-affected first day by going four under, finally recording a sub-par attempt in the opening round of the Championship at the seventh time of asking.

McIlroy now sits six shots off leader Thomas Bjorn, who equalled the course record at Wentworth with a round of 62.

Rory McIlroy was close to tears during an emotional press conference ahead of the BMW PGA Championship © Getty Images

The highlight of McIlroy's round undoubtedly came when he holed out from 130 yards for eagle at the seventh, one of two eagles in his round.

He very nearly finished with a third at the last but had to settle for a tap-in birdie after his putt stayed up.

"Any time you have two eagles in one round you're going to do well. They both helped the scorecard out a lot," McIlroy told the European Tour's official website.

"But I played solid. I tried to just focus on each shot as it came, and try and play it the best way I could, try and move onto the next shot and do the same thing. It added up to a 68 at the end of the day, which I think is probably my best round around this golf course in quite a while.

"Thomas [Bjorn] played a phenomenal round of golf out there this morning, 10 under par around this place is something I didn't see at the start of the day.

"But four under has got me in the top 10, which is a pretty rare position for me in this tournament so I'll try and keep myself there.

"It was a very stop and start day. I was in the gym this morning and it became a long day for me, so I'm happy that we got 18 holes in and we can get that extra hour's sleep tomorrow and get out on the course again."

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