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Rory McIlroy fights back tears in emotional Ryder Cup interview: ‘I’m really proud to be part of this team’

·2-min read
Rory McIlroy only scored one point for Europe at the Ryder Cup  (Getty Images)
Rory McIlroy only scored one point for Europe at the Ryder Cup (Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy fought back the tears during an emotional interview on the final day of the Ryder Cup.

The four-time major winner beat Olympic champion Xander Schauffele 3-and-2 in his singles contest on Sunday to record his first point for Team Europe at Whistling Straits.

That was McIlroy’s first contribution to Europe’s cause at a hugely disappointing tournament after he was dropped by captain Padraig Harrington for Saturday’s action after partnering Ian Poulter and then Shane Lowry to defeats in the foursomes and fourballs respectively on day one.

It was the first time in his career that the former world no1 had not been picked for a Ryder Cup session, breaking a streak of 26 straight matches.

McIlroy’s victory against Schauffele only served to delay the dominant USA’s inevitable triumph in Wisconsin and afterwards he became tearful in an emotional interview on live television as he hailed the Ryder Cup experience despite Europe’s struggles.

“I’m really proud to be part of this team, to be a team-mate of all these guys, the captain and the vice-captains,” he said.

“We’ve had a great time. It looks like it’s not going to pan out the way we want on the golf course. I’ve been extremely disappointed that I haven’t contributed more for the team. I’m glad I got a point on the board today for them but it’s been a tough week.

“The more I play in this event I realise that it’s the best event in golf, bar none. I love being part of it and I can’t wait to be part of many more. It’s the best.

“I don’t think there’s any greater privilege to be part of one of these teams, European or American. It’s an absolute privilege.

“I’ve got to do this six times and they’ve always been the best experiences of my career.

“I’ve never really cried or got emotional over what I’ve done as an individual, I couldn’t give a s**t. But this team and what it feels like to be part of, to see Sergio [Garcia] break records, to see Jon Rahm come into his own this week, to see one of my best friends Shane Lowry make his Ryder Cup debut, all that is just phenomenal and I’m so happy to be part of it.

“I’m disappointed that I didn’t contribute more this week but in two years’ time we’ll go again and give it another go.”

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