Advertisement

Rory McIlroy says he'll continue to play soccer despite injuring ankle

Rory McIlroy says he'll continue to play soccer despite injuring ankle
Rory McIlroy works on his game at the driving range in preparation for the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits in Sheboygan, Wis. (Chris Carlson / Associated Press)

Rory McIlroy says he will continue to play soccer when he's not golfing, even if he nearly broke his ankle while playing a game with friends in Northern Ireland on July 4.

McIlroy told reporters in Sheboygan, Wis., on Wednesday that he could just as easily get injured walking off a tee box on the golf course as playing soccer.

Advertisement

"I'm not going to stop doing what I do," McIlroy said the day before the start of the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits. "I enjoy that part of my life. I enjoy having that normality in my life, something that I've done since I was a kid, and I won't stop doing that.

"Anytime I go back home, one of the things that I regularly do with my friends is to play football. That was like the fourth or fifth time in a 10-day period where I had played football. I enjoy it. We all enjoy it. And it's unfortunate that it happened. It can happen walking off a tee box. It can happen falling off a curb on the side of the street. It can happen doing anything."

McIlroy said his left cleat got stuck in the turf and he rolled over the ankle, tearing one ligament and spraining another.

"It could have been much worse," he said. "It could have required surgery. Luckily, that wasn't the case."

McIlroy, who was out of action for seven weeks and missed the British Open, said the experience helped put golf and his life in perspective.

"I thought I was going to miss it more than I did," McIlroy said. "If anything, having to sit those tournaments out, especially the Open Championship going back to St. Andrews, which is probably my favorite venue in the world, it gave me a huge sense of perspective. When you're playing week in, week out and you're thinking about winning these tournaments, you get so wrapped up in what you're doing and your own little life and your own little bubble, sometimes you forget there's a bigger, wider world out there.''

McIlroy is in jeopardy of losing his No. 1 ranking in the world if Jordan Spieth, who is the reigning Masters and U.S. Open champion, claims his third Grand Slam event this year.

Advertisement
Advertisement