Golf: McIlroy speaks after shot accidentally hits father
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Team GB golfer Paul Casey was full of praise for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic golf tournament, following his debut as an Olympian in Japan. The former world number one got off to a solid start in the event at Kasumigaseki Country Club, after shooting a bogeyless, four-under-par 67 in his opening round.
Following his first taste of Olympic action Casey described the experience as the ‘coolest thing’ he had done in his golf career.
The world number 22 said: “I just felt really proud, it was the coolest thing I’ve ever done in golf, there was not one ounce of nerves, just 100 percent excitement.”
Casey added: “I’ve thought about this for long because you can’t count yourself as an Olympian until you’ve started your competition. It was brilliant but then I got down to business.”
The Englishman’s Olympic thoughts could not have been further away from those of fellow athlete Rory McIlroy however, after the Team Ireland member described the event as ‘not much to look forward to’ ahead of the games.
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Speaking after the Open Championship at Royal St. George’s McIlroy said: “I don’t know if there is much to look forward to [about the Olympics], It’s obviously going to be a very different environment.”
However, it seemed the four-time major champion changed his mind following his Olympic debut, aligning with the thoughts of Casey.
After his first round of 69, McIlroy commented: “I always wondered what the Olympic spirit was – you get here and you feel you’re part of something bigger than yourself. I can see this in 20, 30, 40 years time being as important as the majors.”
Both McIlroy and Casey sit seven-under-par following day two, as the former finished with a superb Friday, five-under, 66, whilst the latter currently sits three-under-par with one hole to play in his second round after adverse weather forced play to be suspended for the day.
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Despite a successful career 44-year-old, Casey is still yet to win an all-important major title, after coming close on a number of occasions including last year’s PGA Championship where he produced his best major finish in tied-second.
There is no doubt however the Englishman still has many majors ahead of him, but believes he may not have many more chances to win Olympic gold and is therefore targeting a medal this summer in Tokyo.
He said: “This might be the only chance I have to win Olympic gold, there will be other chances for majors.”
Casey will resume his second round this evening at 11:45am BST and will then join McIlroy and the rest of the field in round three, which begins in the early hours of tomorrow morning from approximately 1:30am BST.
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