POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Mar 7, 2013
DORAL, Fla. >> Rory McIlroy offered another apology, a straightforward explanation and a pledge Wednesday that he will never again quit in the middle of a round.
McIlroy faced the media for the first time since he abruptly walked off the golf course in the second round of the Honda Classic, telling reporters that his head was not in the right place and then issuing a statement that his sore wisdom tooth made it difficult to concentrate.
Turns out the wisdom tooth wasn’t the whole truth, and the world’s No. 1 player said, “It will never happen again.”
“I think it was a buildup of everything,” McIlroy said at the Cadillac Championship. “I’ve been putting a lot of pressure on myself to perform, and I’ve been working so hard and not really getting much out of it. That’s just been the frustrating thing, and that’s what happened.
“I just sort of let it all get to me.”
McIlroy attributed his frustration to wanting to improve on his breakthrough season, when he won his second major at the PGA Championship, five tournaments around the world, money titles on the two biggest tours and established himself as the best player in golf.
But he dismissed suggestions that his new equipment deal added to the pressure.
This was about the frustration of not finding his swing and being exposed on the golf course with high scores.
“No matter how bad I was playing, I should have stayed out there,” he said. “I should have tried to shoot the best score possible, even though it probably wasn’t going to be good enough to make the cut. At that point in time, I was just all over the place. I saw red ... and it was a mistake and everyone makes mistakes and I’m learning from them. I guess for me, some people have the pleasure of making mistakes in private. Most of my mistakes are in the public eye.
“I regret what I did.”