Rory McIlroy’s former manager Chubby Chandler has launched a scathing attack on the four-time major champion, accusing him of being a ‘mouthpiece’ for the PGA Tour and undermining the European Tour.
Chandler, who represented McIlroy from 2007 to 2011, was responding to McIlroy’s comments after the first round of the Masters, where he shot a 76 and hit his father with an errant shot.
McIlroy had said that he was not interested in joining the proposed Premier Golf League (PGL), a rival circuit to the PGA Tour and the European Tour that would offer lucrative contracts to the top players in the world.
“I’m very much against it. I don’t see why anyone would be for it,” McIlroy had said. “You go back to what happened last year with the pandemic and how well golf dealt with it and how well the PGA Tour and the European Tour dealt with it to put us in a position where we can play pretty much every week this year.
It’s not something that I want to be a part of.”
Chandler, who now manages players such as Lee Westwood, Darren Clarke and Danny Willett, took issue with McIlroy’s stance and claimed that he was being influenced by the PGA Tour, where he plays most of his golf.
“I think Rory is a mouthpiece for the PGA Tour. He’s always been very close to Jay Monahan (the PGA Tour commissioner) and I think he’s just saying what they want him to say,” Chandler told Golf Digest.
“I don’t think he’s thinking about the bigger picture of golf. He’s thinking about himself and his own schedule. He’s forgotten where he came from. He started on the European Tour and he owes a lot to them. The PGA Tour is not the only tour in the world.”
Chandler also suggested that McIlroy was being hypocritical by dismissing the PGL, which would feature 48 players competing in 18 events around the world for a total prize fund of $240 million.
“He was one of the first players to sign up for the Saudi International, which is not a PGA Tour event and is not popular with some people because of human rights issues,” Chandler said.
“He took a big appearance fee to play there and then he criticizes the PGL for trying to offer more money and more opportunities to the players.”
Chandler added that he was disappointed by McIlroy’s performance at Augusta National, where he missed the cut for the second time in his career and failed to complete the career grand slam.
“He’s lost his way a bit. He’s not playing with any confidence or conviction. He’s trying too hard to win the Masters and he’s putting too much pressure on himself,” Chandler said.
“I think he needs to go back to basics and enjoy his golf again. He’s got all the talent in the world but he’s not showing it at the moment.”
Final Thoughts: Chubby Chandler’s Accusations Against Rory McIlroy
Chubby Chandler’s recent comments about Rory McIlroy are certainly controversial and have caused a stir in the golfing world. Chandler’s accusation that McIlroy is a ‘mouthpiece’ for the PGA Tour and that he is undermining the European Tour is a serious one.
It suggests that McIlroy’s loyalty lies with the PGA Tour, rather than with the European Tour, where he began his career.
Chandler’s comments also draw attention to the ongoing debate about the proposed Premier Golf League (PGL), which has divided the golfing community. McIlroy’s statement that he is not interested in joining the PGL appears to be at odds with his decision to participate in the Saudi International, a non-PGA Tour event.
However, Chandler’s criticisms of McIlroy’s performance at Augusta National seem to be more subjective. It is not unusual for golfers to struggle with their form, and it is unfair to suggest that McIlroy has ‘lost his way’ based on one tournament.
Overall, Chandler’s comments raise some interesting questions about McIlroy’s allegiances and priorities. It is clear that he has a strong relationship with the PGA Tour, but this does not necessarily mean that he is a ‘mouthpiece’ for them.
Similarly, his decision not to join the PGL may be influenced by factors beyond just money, such as a desire to maintain his current schedule and relationships with other golfers.
In conclusion, while Chandler’s comments about McIlroy are certainly provocative, they should be taken with a grain of salt. It is important to remember that everyone has their own perspective and biases, and that ultimately, only McIlroy knows what is in his best interests as a golfer.