Rory McIlroy takes a shot at and his terminated Ryder Cup captaincy: ‘Best thing to happen

Rory McIlroy takes a shot at and his terminated Ryder Cup captaincy: ‘Best thing to happen

It could not have been easy week for Rory McIlroy. He saw one of the best players in the world, Jon Rahm, defect to LIV Golf for hundreds of millions of dollars, and he remains in a tough spot as the second-most high-profile guy (Tiger Woods being No. 1) to take a stand against the Saudis. Yet the Ulsterman also had to go public with a plea that the Ryder Cup qualifying rules be altered so that Rahm could compete for Europe in 2025 and beyond.

So, forgive McIlroy (or not) for letting off a little steam when someone pitched him a slow softball Saturday on X (formerly Twitter). In a discussion referencing McIlroy’s Ryder Cup concern, golf data guru Lou Stagner, of Arccos, posted, “I wonder if @McIlroyRory also wants to change the rules so Stenson can captain the team

The query—in reference to Henrik Stenson being stripped of his captaincy for the 2023 matches because he joined LIV in 2022—was likely facetious and probably rhetorical. But McIlroy, being the avid reader he is, saw the comment and responded on Saturday by taking a shot at the Swede.

Stenson, of course, was disappointed to lose his captaincy, though the five-time Ryder Cup player had to know that he was taking that chance when he signed with LIV.

“I’m just disappointed that with everything that came out because there was a big willingness on my part to sit down and talk long before this thing got to where it got to,” Stenson said in an interview after the final round of this year’s Open Championship. “There were certain people, without naming names, that didn’t want to sit down and take those meetings. As a consequence, I feel like we ended up in all of this that could have been avoided. But we live, and we learn.”

Stenson reportedly got a $50 million contract from LIV and two weeks after he was removed as Ryder Cup captain, he won his LIV debut at Trump Bedminster to claim the $4 million first prize. In 13 events this past season, Stenson notched three top-10s.

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