Date: November 14, 2013

McIlroy game in good shape for Sydney

Rory McIlroy believes his improving form of late gives him every chance of successfully defending his DP World Tour Championship title in Dubai this week. The World Number Six admits some off-course issues have clouded his form slightly in 2013, but a sixth-place finish in the WGC- HSBC Champions highlighted the Northern Irishman s resurgence. A year ago victory at Jumeirah Golf Estates capped an incredible year in which McIlroy won The Race to Dubai, a second Major at the US PGA Championship, the US PGA Tour s money list and rose to World Number One. And the 24 year old believes retaining his tile at a course where he has never finished worse than 11th could be the catalyst for getting back to those incredible heights. I feel like I&aposm playing well, he said. I feel like I&aposm playing much better. Obviously there has been a lot of improvement in my game, and a lot of positive signs, which is a great thing. I&aposve still got a couple more tournaments left this year, and it&aposs nice to come back to a place like Dubai where I had success last year and some good memories. I&aposm in a good place to try to defend my title this week. After a week&aposs break, McIlroy heads to Sydney in a fortnight for the Emirates Australian Open at Royal Sydney Golf Club. It seems like every year I&aposve come here, maybe apart from 2010, I&aposve been in the mix to try to win The Race to Dubai. I&aposve been there or thereabouts: Lee [Westwood] in &apos09 played very well to beat me, and Luke [Donald] in &apos11, and obviously last year it was nice for it to be my turn. It’s a little bit different coming in this week and not having much to play for in terms of Race to Dubai, but I still want to try to finish the season off really strongly. I feel like this course really suits my game. I know it would be a great way to cap off the European season with a win. It&aposs been an interesting year. Obviously a lot of stuff has gone on both on the course and off the course, but the big thing for me is my game is in really good shape again, and that&aposs the most important thing. My game is in good shape, and if that starts to work the way I know I can and the way most people know I can, then everything else falls into place.