Wilson extends Newcastle lead against Leicester

The Telegraph

Rory McIlroy makes cut at Wells Fargo to play ‘weekend golf’ for first time in two months

“Yes, weekend golf!” So Rory McIlroy bellowed, arms aloft, as he left the recorder’s hut here at the Wells Fargo Championship and headed to speak to the media. Of course, this was mock celebration on behalf of the four-time major winner, but beneath the self-deprecation there was clearly relief that he will be playing competitively on a Saturday for the first time in two months. If that sounds incredible for someone of McIlroy’s stature, then it should be noted this is only his fourth event since finishing 10th at Bay Hill at the start of March. No doubt the ensuing missed cuts at The Players and The Masters – as well as the group-stage exit at the WGC Match Play – were worrisome and did cause him to slip to 15th in the world, his lowliest ranking in 11 years. But Pete Cowen, his new swing coach, has assured him they are nowhere near panic stations. This five-under 66 at his beloved Quail Hollow proved as much. Despite two late three-putts, McIlroy hurtled up from a tie for 78th, eight off the lead and outside the cut-line, to four-under and into a tie for fifth, just two behind the halfway pacesetters, England’s Matt Wallace (67) and a pair of Americans in former US Open champion Gary Woodland (69l and Patrick Rodgers (68). If McIlroy can fix his form off the tee, the quality of his iron play suggests a first win in 19 months could be just around the dogleg. “I worked hard after Augusta,” he said. “Yeah I took a week off, which I needed, but then I put my head down and felt better about everything coming in here.” Well, almost everything. He is still battling with the fact that contrary to a lifetime of a “high slinging draw” with the driver, he is now fading it. “With these modern drivers, it’s harder to turn them over, so I’ve had to adjust,” he explained. “I just have to commit to going down the left side and trust it’s going to come back.”