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Golf: Magic marker beats McIlroy over 18 at Masters

Pre-tournament favorite Rory McIlroy's luckless week at the Masters continued Saturday when he was beaten over 18 holes at Augusta National by Jeff Knox, the non-competing marker playing alongside him. Two-time major champion McIlroy, the last of 51 players to make the cut, was the first man out in the third round and was assigned Knox, a veteran of such situations, as a playing partner to keep score and aid the pace of play.

Golf: Woodland shows Masters scoring chances on offer

Gary Woodland opened with a birdie and followed with an eagle on Saturday in early third-round play at the Masters, showing scoring opportunities available later for leaders at Augusta National. The 29-year-old American, who only reached the field for the year's first major by qualifying for last year's US PGA Tour Championship, went off in the fifth group of the day with countryman Billy Horschel.

Six, six, six proves devilishly frustrating for McIlroy

By Tony Jimenez AUGUSTA, Georgia (Reuters) - Three sixes proved devilishly irritating for Rory McIlroy in the second round as the world number nine survived the halfway cut at the Masters on Friday by the skin of his teeth. The 24-year-old Northern Irishman had sixes at the second, 10th and 13th holes and needed to roll in a par-saving six-foot putt at the last for a five-over 77 and a four-under total of 148, qualifying for the weekend by one solitary stroke.

Golf: Ike's Tree gone but not forgotten at Masters

Augusta National has not yet decided how to replace "Ike's Tree", the iconic 17th-hole landmark removed from the famed course after damage from an ice storm last February. But club chairman Billy Payne said officials will be watching how the hole plays in this week's 78th Masters to help decide how to replace the "famous and beloved" giant, century-old loblolly pine. "We do not yet have a definitive plan as to what, if anything, we will do to the 17th hole beyond this year's tournament," Payne said.

Golf: No more Masters misery for McIlroy

Rory McIlroy has shed tears at the Masters before, but with two major titles in the bag since then, he doubts he ever will again. The tears flowed while talking to his mother by phone the day after shooting a final-round 80 to blow a four-shot lead going into the last day of the 2011 Masters. Two months later he famously rebounded by winning the US Open at the Congressional Club in Washington by eight strokes and he went on to to add the PGA Championship the following year at Kiawah Island.

Golf: McIlroy at maximum for Masters says coach

Two-time major champion Rory McIlroy is in the best shape of his career with mind, body and equipment entering a major event, according to his assistant coach, Dave Stockton. With McIlroy among the favorites this week in the 78th Masters at Augusta National, Stockton likes the Northern Irishman's chances after a strong final round at the PGA Houston Open. "Every club he has in the bag he is happy with and Rory is in a really good place mind, body and soul," Stockton said.

Golf: McIlroy vows to put meltdown behind him

Squandering a late lead last weekend has taught Rory McIlroy a valuable lesson heading into this week's World Golf Championships at Doral and next month's Masters. The 24-year-old Northern Irishman led through the first three rounds of the Honda Classic and most of the fourth, but took a double bogey at 16, a bogey at 17, missed an 11-foot eagle putt at 18 for the win and lost a playoff to Russell Henley. "I was just disappointed with how I played coming down the stretch. It obviously wasn't what I would have liked," McIlroy said Wednesday.

Steady McIlroy has two-stroke lead at Honda Classic

(Reuters) - Rory McIlroy was steady rather than spectacular as he extended his lead to two strokes after the third round at the $6 million Honda Classic in south Florida on Saturday. McIlroy missed only one green on the water-lined back nine as he compiled a one-under-par 69 in a moderate breeze at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens. "I thought 69 in the conditions was a pretty good score," the 24-year-old from Northern Ireland told Golf Channel.

McIroy says he has head right this time

(Reuters) - What a difference a year has made for Rory McIlroy, who 12 months ago tarnished his reputation by quitting during the second round of the PGA Tour's Honda Classic. McIlroy's head was a mess and his game was not much better at this time last year as he walked off the course citing a toothache, an excuse he later admitted was rather lame.

Golf: McIlroy still undecided about Rio Olympic ties

Northern Ireland star Rory McIlroy remains undecided about whether he would play for Ireland or Britain at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, when golf returns to the Games programme. For the first time since 1904, golfers will compete for Olympic gold but that brings the tricky question of nationality into play because Northern Ireland does not field its own team. "I haven't made a decision yet," McIlroy told the US PGA Tour website on Wednesday.
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