Rory McIlroy could not conceal his anger after missing his first cut in seven months at the Honda Classic in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Friday.
“I’m p—– off,” the world No 1 said, after a four-over 74 saw him crash out on seven-over. “I don’t like missing cuts. I’m not going to be playing this weekend, which is not nice.”
McIlroy was at a loss to explain his sudden slump in form. He arrived at the PGA National having played twice in 2015, finishing second in Abu Dhabi before winning in Dubai. This continued a brilliant run which featured four victories – two of which were majors – and four runner-up placings in 12 events. With only two more tournaments before the Masters – where he will attempt to become just the sixth player in history to achieve the career grand slam – this was the last thing McIlroy expected.
“This week was funny, it felt like the first tournament of the season when I’ve actually played twice,” McIlroy said. “I just have to regroup and put some work in and get ready for [the WGC Cadillac Championship in] Miami next week.”
The American Patrick Reed was the clubhouse leader on six-under after a 67, with England’s Luke Donald making a welcome return to form on four-under, after his own 67 in difficult windy conditions.
Half of the field will return in the morning to finish their second rounds, with Brendan Steele one eight-under after four holes. Ian Poulter and Padraig Harrington are on the same mark as Donald, having played eight and six holes respectively.