Rory McIlroy recalls Martin Kaymer's dominant win at US Open 2014 while making solid prediction for the weekend

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy and 2014 US Open champion Martin Kaymer (Image via Getty)

Rory McIlroy doesn’t think the 2024 US Open will have a runaway champion. The Northern Irishman predicted this on the second day of the competition. The four-time major champion opined that Martin Kaymer’s dominant victory at Pinehurst in 2014 was a one-off incident.

For the unversed, Ludvig Aberg took the lead in the US Open on Friday. The 24-year-old major debutant carded a 1-under 69 in round 2 to take a one-shot lead over the likes of Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Cantlay and Thomas Detry. Despite his lead in the competition, McIlroy stated that the competition will remain tight till Sunday’s end.

Commenting on the projected score, the 35-year-old stated that Kaymer's eight-shot victory, when the tournament was held at this venue the last time in 2014, wasn’t getting repeated.

Rory McIlroy said on Friday, as quoted by the Daily Express:

“With the way the golf course is and the way some of those hole locations are, I don't see anyone running away with it today, building up too much of a lead. That's certainly what Martin did a few years ago here. It will be interesting to see how it all pans out this afternoon.”

It is pertinent to note that McIlroy had a strong start to the weekend. The ace golfer kicked off his US Open campaign with a bogey-free round on Thursday. This mirrored the opening round of his 2014 Open Championship win. However, the golfer fell off on day 2 and managed only a two-over 72. He sat three-under, sharing T5 on Friday.

Commenting on his start, McIlroy said:

“I was 2-over pretty early. My goal going into that second nine was if I could get it back to even for the day, I would have been pretty happy. Got that birdie on 3. I was trying to claw one back there. Ultimately, I gave one back again.”

McIlroy, currently world No. 3, believes the course setup and tricky pin positions will keep the leaderboard tight.


Rory McIlroy lauds ‘exciting’ Pinehurst course

The Pinehurst No.2 course was deemed a ‘tough test’ by many this week including US Open reigning champion Wyndham Clark. He called the course “borderline” during a practice session earlier this week. Despite this, Rory McIlroy came out to state that he would “love” to play “more golf courses like this.”

The Northern Irishman lauded the conditions at the US Open host course and stated that it demands “more creative and imaginative” play. His comments came after he clinched the early lead in the competition on Thursday.

Speaking about the ‘exciting’ Pinehurst No.2 course, Rory McIlroy said (At 7:08):

“It just gives us a different look than what we play week in week out. It's different, it's exciting. You have to be a little more creative and imaginative... I'd love if we played more golf courses like this."

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It is pertinent to note that McIlroy carded a bogey-free 65 on Thursday despite several analysts predicting a 'nightmare start' for players at Pinehurst.

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Edited by Vishnu Mohan
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