After a rough 2013 season, Rory McIlroy is already looking to rebound from early disappointment following a loss at the Match Play Championship. In order to do that, he'll have to erase the memories of last year's Honda Classic ahead of the Masters.
Following a loss to Harris English at the Match Play Championship, McIlroy immediately turned his sights to this week's tournament.
It was a painful day of golf for the former world No. 1 player, but it doesn't get much easier when thinking back to last year's Honda Classic.
McIlroy came into the 2013 season with plenty of hope and intrigue after signing with Nike and winning the 2012 PGA Championship. Unfortunately, McIlroy walked off the course at seven over par, setting the stage for a year of meltdowns.
While McIlroy clearly hasn't forgotten about the unfortunate finish, he told Steve DiMeglio of USA Today that he has grown from the experience:
You should never walk off the golf course, no matter how bad things are. But it was just one of these days. I just felt like I couldn't cope with anything more, especially not the way I was heading. ... I was going to shoot 90. The last thing I needed. ...
... I've learned from it and I've moved on. It wasn't my finest hour, but at the end of the day, everyone makes mistakes.
The quicker McIlroy forgets last year's tournament, the better. With the Masters coming up on April 10, the field is noticeably stacked with several of golf's most notable stars on the course in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
This will be the first tournament in which McIlroy, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods will all compete against one another in 2014, as ESPN Stats & Info points out. The field also includes the likes of Adam Scott and many other top contenders from last season.
Want to prove this will be a bounce-back season? How about contending in that field ahead of the season's first major?
McIlroy will get that chance when he takes to the course this weekend in Florida.
*All stats courtesy of PGATour.com.