Rory McIlroy Brilliantly Kick-Starts 2016 Masters Hole-In-One At Augusta 16th

Augusta, GA … Rory McIlroy has brilliantly kick-started his 2016 Masters campaign with an ace at the par three, 16th hole at Augusta National.

McIlroy was playing Englishman Chris Wood for ‘dinner’ and 2up on Wood when he holed his 7-iron from 170 yards out.

“That roar was large considering it was a practice round and I don’t think I’ve ever heard a roar that large in a practice round,” he said.

“So it was good as at the time I was 2up on Chris with three to play, so it was sensational way to end the match.

“But it was nice practice round and good to play to Chris.”

McIlroy had singled out the 16th as a key hole in an earlier story on

The 16th as it is one of those hole where there are chances for birdie but for me I am happy to take par there and if can play the 16th in level par all week then I am always very happy and you’re doing okay.”

However he didn’t expect to begin his eighth Masters campaign with an ace.

“Yes, the 16th is not a pushover especially when the pin is over on the right but then you have a decent chance when the pin is on the left,” he said.

It’s not very different at all from what we saw last year. I feel like the way the course is now, is probably the way the course played last year because it was soft and a little slow. I’m sure they are trying to get it faster and firmer as the week goes on.

McIlroy arrived into Augusta on Sunday night and admitting he spent the first three days of last week as ‘couch potato’ before hitting the Bears Club on Thursday in the company of his long-time coach Michael Bannon and fitness coach, Steve McGregor.

“I had three days off early last week and the Michael and Steve got into town on Thursday and started working then,” he said.

“It was only two  weeks in a row but Austin felt like a long week so three days off was good, and besides weather wasn’t very good so sat on the couch and caught up on some TV.

“I also played the one ball off the tees today and that  gets me into a nice mindset of this is how I’m going to play, so I’m going to try to do the same tomorrow, play 18 and a match with someone or a fourball match if three others want to come and join.

“I feel that’s the best way for me to prepare, it’s competitive, you’re trying to shoot a score. The pins aren’t in the spots where they are going to be at the weekend but at the same time  you still have to get the ball in the hole and hole putts that you feel a little bit of pressure on.”

Wood was not at all disappointed to be hosting dinner tonight given he lost the match to an ace.

“When he closes out with a hole-in-one to beat me 3&2, you can’t really do a lot about that!” said Wood.

“We were all square through 13 or 14 and both of us benefitte from having a little game. I’ve never quite heard a noise like it, it was pretty mad. It was great fun. It was a cool moment.

“I suppose it wasn’t quite game over but when the crowd are chanting Rory Rory and you’ve got to tryu and hit a seven iron to that flag there’s not much chance.

“He’s a quality quality player. I’ve played with just about everybody now and Rory is up there with everyone. Very very impressive. He’s going to be a favourite every year he comes back here and this year is no different.”

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