The Players Championship is one of the most prestigious events on the PGA Tour, and is widely considered to be the “fifth major”. This year’s tournament is being held at the TPC Sawgrass in Florida, and has attracted a stellar field of the world’s best golfers.

Among them is Rory McIlroy, who is widely regarded as one of the best players in the world. The Northern Irishman has won four major championships and has spent over 100 weeks as the world number one.

However, McIlroy has not had the best of starts at this year’s Players Championship. After the first two rounds, he finds himself 12 shots off the lead, and in danger of missing the cut.

So, what has gone wrong for the former world number one?

Firstly, his driving has been erratic. McIlroy is known for his prodigious length off the tee, but has struggled to find the fairways at TPC Sawgrass. He ranks 63rd in the field for driving accuracy, hitting just 50% of fairways.

This has put him in difficult positions off the tee, and he has been forced to rely on his scrambling and putting to save par. However, his short game has not been up to its usual standard, and he ranks 64th in the field for scrambling.

Secondly, McIlroy has struggled with the notorious “island green” par-3 17th hole. This is one of the most famous holes in golf, and requires players to hit a tee shot over water to a green that is almost completely surrounded by water.

McIlroy has played the hole twice so far, and has made a double-bogey and a bogey. This has been a major factor in his poor start, as the 17th is one of the most pivotal holes on the course.

Finally, McIlroy has lacked his usual consistency. He has made too many bogeys, and has not been able to string together enough birdies to offset them. His two-round total of 2-over par is not disastrous, but it is well off the pace being set by the leaders.

So, what can McIlroy do to turn his form around?

Firstly, he needs to find the fairways off the tee. This will give him more options on his approach shots, and allow him to attack the pins rather than playing defensively.

Secondly, he needs to improve his short game. The greens at TPC Sawgrass are some of the most difficult on the PGA Tour, and require excellent touch and feel around the greens. McIlroy has the skills to excel in this area, but needs to execute better.

Finally, he needs to stay patient. There are still two rounds to play, and a lot can happen in that time. The leaderboard is tightly bunched, and there is still a chance for McIlroy to make a charge.

In conclusion, Rory McIlroy has not had the best of starts at this year’s Players Championship. He is 12 shots off the lead after two rounds, and needs to improve his driving, his short game, and his consistency if he is to have any chance of contending for the title.

However, McIlroy is one of the most talented players in the world, and has the ability to turn his form around quickly. If he can find his rhythm and execute his shots with confidence, he could still be a factor in the final rounds of the tournament.