Rory McIlroy’s hopes of securing his first victory since May at the WGC–HSBC Champions this week have been hit by a bout of food poisoning.
The four-time major winner was unable to feature in the pre-tournament Pro-Am in Shanghai due to abdominal pains.
But McIlroy is optimistic of recovering in time to tee off in the tournament at the Sheshan International Golf Club on Thursday, as he aims to attempts to win the Race to Dubai for the third time in four years.
“I’m not feeling great to be honest. I had something [to eat] a couple of nights ago and yesterday wasn’t good at all,” said McIlroy, who was tied for sixth in the Turkish Airlines Open last week.
“I thought I would be better this morning, but I had a piece of toast and a couple of bits of melon for breakfast and I came here and tried to hit some balls, but even just making a couple of swings my stomach was too sore.
“So I just need another day of rest and hopefully I will be better tomorrow and I can play.
“I was up from about 1am to 4am last night. The night before it didn’t start until about 4am, so it hasn’t been great. I’ve seen the doctor who has given me some antibiotics and something for the abdominal pain, plus some painkillers. I’ll be loaded up, so hopefully I will be OK.
“I was thinking of trying to play nine holes, but that would probably do me more harm than good. It would be nice to see the golf course before tomorrow, but I’ve played it a few times.
“I didn’t play last year but I know the place well and JP [caddie, Fitzgerald] has been out there, so it is better that I rest and get my energy up for tomorrow.”