A record-breaking final round tie to Rory McIlroy’s Masters Tournament could transform him from Clark Kent into the “Superman” golfer, according to former PGA Tour pro Brandel Chambly.
McIlroy is hiding from a bunker in the 18th Augusta National on Sunday to complete 64 thrills, his lowest in the Masters and the lowest joint level in the final round in championship history.
It wasn’t enough to secure the victory he needed to complete his Grand Slam career, with world number one Scottie Scheffler grabbing an impressive fourth win in just 57 days, but Shamble is hoping it inspires McIlroy to launch faster at the Grand Slams.
Since winning the 2014 US PGA Championship, McIlroy has averaged a total of 35 over par in the first round of the Majors, his most recent effort being a 73 in Augusta.
“Maybe this round will get Rory out of his big predicament and remind him of who he is from a talent perspective,” said Golf Channel analyst Chamblee.
“There’s no doubt he was a different player early on (in the majors). In 27 majors since he last won, with the exception of a few, they’ve each had a direction.
“He started on Thursday as a single player, then went to the phone booth and walked out as Superman the best player in the world on Saturday, Sunday. That probably turned him into the best player in the world on Thursday morning in the PGA.”
Former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley believes McIlroy is more than capable of claiming the elusive Masters title, adding: “We know this course has to fit his playing style. His chops are great, so he’s been underrated, and his situation has improved.”
“There is no reason he can’t go and complete a Grand Slam. That might start with a bit of faith, go on and take a big win in fifth. He’s miles good enough to do that.”
McIlroy led the field in driving distance during the week and was also set to head the Greens in the regulation class until finding sand as he approached Day 18.
“I’ve played well enough here, maybe not in four rounds together, but I’ve always known I had the game to win in that place,” said McIlroy.
“Probably one of the best rounds I’ve had in a major tournament and it qualifies me for the rest of the year. I feel my game has been kind of quietly good without really showing results.
“It’s not a good idea to have your game in top shape and rank 30 every week. Every now and then, it’s good to get results like this just to make sure that what you’re doing is the right things.
“The only person who beat me this week is the best golfer in the world right now. I’m on the right track and doing the right things.
“It was nice to feel that hype at a major tournament again. It’s been a while since I’ve felt like that. I think the last time I tried to get success in the Open (at Portrush in 2019) so this was definitely better than that.
“I am excited to move forward and believe this day will put me in a good position not only at the Masters for the next few years, but also to move forward in my career.”