Rory McIlroy may not be participating in the British Open this year after rupturing a ligament in his ankle. McIlroy posted about the injury on his Instagram account Monday, writing, “Continuing to assess extent of injury and treatment plan day by day. Rehab already started…. Working hard to get back as soon as I can.” Included in the post was a photograph showing him on crutches and wearing a protective ankle boot.
The golfer injured his left ankle while playing soccer with friends in Northern Ireland over the weekend. McIlroy reportedly ruptured his anterior talofibular ligament. This type of injury would hamper his ability to shift his weight while following through on a golf swing. In comments to the Associated Press, McIlroy’s spokesman Sean O’Flaherty said that the golfer would sit out the Scottish Open this week before making a decision on whether he is healthy enough to play at St. Andrews on July 16.
The 26-year-old McIlroy is currently the top-ranked golfer in the world. He was considered to be one of the favorites to win the British Open and the Scottish Open at Gullane where he was scheduled to play this week. McIlroy won his first British Open crown at Hoylake last July. So far, the golfer has won four major titles in his career, including the PGA Championship last year.
Medics have indicated that a total rupture would mean that he would miss the British Open and miss defending his USPGA title at Whispering Straits in three weeks. McIlroy suffered a similar injury in Dec 2013 after playing soccer with friends, but was only out of action for a week after the injury was deemed a sprain. His current injury appears to be considerably more severe.
Over the next few days, he will have the injury scanned several times to monitor the extent of the rupture and its healing progress. Details about how long McIlroy is expected to be out of commission have not been revealed, but these types of injuries can take weeks or months for a full recovery and may also require surgery to repair the damage.