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Rory McIlroy to play in WM Phoenix Open for 1st time in career

Rory McIlroy hits out of the bunker on the second hole during the final round of the Masters golf tournament Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Augusta, Ga. (Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)

The Waste Management Phoenix Open added yet another notable name to its 2021 field of golfers.

The tournament announced Monday that Rory McIlroy will be making his WMPO debut this February.

He joins Jason Day as the latest two commits to the tournament.

“We are excited to welcome Rory to the WM Phoenix Open for the first time ever and glad to welcome back Jason to TPC Scottsdale,” tournament chairman Scott Jenkins said in a press release.

“They are some of the most accomplished players in recent PGA TOUR history and continue to add to the already impressive list of world-class golfers in the field. We are ready to get things going and looking forward to watching these great players tee it up at ‘The People’s Open’ next week.”

McIlroy is currently ranked No. 7 in the world. Day comes in at No. 43.

Over the span of his 14-year professional career, McIlroy has captured 18 PGA Tour victories and 14 European Tour titles. He’s won four majors and is a two-time FedExCup champion. McIlroy has also been named the PGA Tour Player of the Year three times (2012, 2014, 2019) and European Golfer of the Year three times (2012, 2014, 2015).

Day, who is making his fourth appearance at the Phoenix Open, has 12 PGA Tour victories since turning pro in 2006.

With the two latest commitments, the WMPO has 19 players who are ranked among the top 50 in the world. Leading the way is Arizona State alum Jon Rahm, who is currently No. 2 is the world.

McIlroy’s first appearance to the WMPO will look quite a bit different than it would have in previous years.

The tournament announced earlier in January it would be limiting fan attendance in 2021 to 5,000 spectators per day, Wednesday through Sunday, due to the COVID-19 concerns in the state. Additionally, the venues around the golf course, including the grandstands at the 16th hole, will be scaled down.


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