Rory McIlroy was driven to tears in a heartfelt interview with Sky Sports after winning his Sunday singles match in the Ryder Cup, with Team Europe on the verge of a heavy defeat to Team USA at Whistling Straits.
The Northern Irishman could not hold back his tears while speaking to Sky Sports’ Henni Koyack after a difficult weekend personally in Wisconsin.
Four-time major winner McIlroy’s par at the par-five 16th hole was enough for him to oversee a 3&2 win over Tokyo Olympic gold medallist Xander Schauffele and clinch a point.
That was his first point of the week as he admitted he felt he had let the rest of his team down with his performances.
And though McIlroy’s win cut the gap temporarily to 11-6, Team USA were still in control across the board on Sunday as they close in on a first Ryder Cup triumph since 2016.
An emotional McIlroy had to pause several times throughout his interview as he said after finishing his round: “Yeah, I just… Erm… I love being a part of this team.
“I love my team-mates so much and I should have done more for them this week. I am glad I put a point on the board for Europe today but I just can’t wait to get another shot at this.
“It is by far the best experience in golf and I hope the little boys and girls watching this today aspire to play in this event and the Solheim Cup because there is nothing better than being part of a team, especially with the bond that we have in Europe.
“No matter what happens after this I am proud of every single one of those players that played this week and our captain and vice-captains. I just which I could have done a little more for the team.
“I am glad I got a point on the board but you know, it has been a tough week.”
Former world No 1 McIlroy was far from his best across the weekend and on Saturday was left out of a Ryder Cup session for the first time in his career.
That was after the 32-year-old lost both of his matches on Friday’s opening day and sat out Saturday’s opening foursomes.
Before then he had played in 26 straight matches since making his debut in the competition in 2010.
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In a separate interview with NBC Sports, McIlroy added: “We’ve had a great time. Looks like it’s not going to pan out the way we want on the golf course. I’ve been extremely disappointed I haven’t contributed more for the team.
“It’s been a tough week. The more and more I play in this event, I realise it’s the best event in golf bar none. I love being a part of it and I can’t wait to be a part of many more.
“I don’t think there’s any greater privilege than to be a part of one of these teams, European or American. I’ve gotten to do this six times, they’ve always been the greatest 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*** but this team and what it feels like to be a 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. I’m so happy to be a part of it. As I said I’m disappointed I didn’t contribute more this week.
“But you know, in two years’ time we’ll go again. It’s not over yet but we’ll give it another go. Sorry for swearing back then as well!”
After McIlroy finished, Scottie Scheffler defeated Rahm to make it 12-6 and leave the US just 2.5 points from victory, before Patrick Cantlay overcame Shane Lowry 4&2 to make it 13-6.
Bryson DeChambeau’s 3&2 defeat of Garcia put USA 0.5 points away with Collin Morikawa taking half a point against Viktor Hovland to confirm the hosts’ triumph.
The next Ryder Cup will take place in Italy near Rome in autumn 2023, when Europe will hope to reclaim the title they are set to imminently lose.