Rory McIlroy 'eviscerates' Greg Norman in live TV takedown
Golf star Rory McIlroy has taken a subtle dig at LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman after his Canadian Open victory.
McIlroy closed with an eight-under 62 to win a wild race to the finish with Justin Thomas and Tony Finau.
'NEED MORE TIME': Golf fans saddened by Tiger Woods announcement
SPEAKING OUT: Phil Mickelson breaks silence on Saudi Arabia furore
The Northern Irishman had his first title defence on the PGA Tour, even if he had to wait for it.
He won golf's fourth-oldest national open in 2019 at Hamilton Golf & Country Club, only for the the Covid-19 pandemic to cancel the next two editions.
However, while everyone was celebrating the Northern Irishman's achievement, McIlroy used his platform to take a subtle swipe at Norman in an interview.
Norman's controversial LIV Invitational series officially got underway at the Centurion Club in London, with a number of the biggest names in world golf taking part after defecting from the PGA Tour.
The much-maligned series is funded by Saudi Arabia and is using a reported $3 billion war chest to lure players away from the PGA Tour.
And during the campaign to bring over some of golf's biggest names, McIlroy has been one of the leading voices against the breakaway group.
This prompted Norman, who runs the controversially Saudi-funded LIV Golf, to claim in a Washington Post story that McIlroy had been "brainwashed" by the PGA Tour.
And during an interview after his victory, McIlroy couldn't help but point out that his 21st PGA title moved him ahead of Norman.
Rory McIlroy knew exactly how many tournaments Greg Norman won and he had this in the chamber. https://t.co/dl5znQJUcq pic.twitter.com/DavUi4Mvhh
— Mike Beauvais (@MikeBeauvais) June 12, 2022
"This is a day I'll remember for a long, long time," a giddy McIlroy said.
"Twenty-one PGA Tour wins, one more than somebody else."
Viewers couldn't help but weigh-in on the drama after McIlroy's dig at Norman.
Rory McIlroy vs Greg Norman for the soul of golf. What a time.
— Dan Rapaport (@Daniel_Rapaport) June 12, 2022
"21st, one more than someone else."
Greg Norman: 20 PGA Tour wins.
— No Laying Up (@NoLayingUp) June 12, 2022
Rory: "My 21st PGA Tour win. One more than someone else ..."
Greg Norman has 20.
— Kyle Porter (@KylePorterCBS) June 12, 2022
Rory being shady towards Greg Norman saying he has one more win than him👀 LIV-ing for this drama…I’ll be here all week
— Paige Spiranac (@PaigeSpiranac) June 12, 2022
— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) June 12, 2022
Rory wins and still finds a way to eviscerate Norman. My goodness.
— Jonathan Wall (@jonathanrwall) June 12, 2022
Rory McIlroy claims Canadian Open
Thomas pushed McIlroy to the end at St. George's Golf & Country Club, and the tournament effectively ended on the 17th hole.
McIlroy and Thomas were tied and in the rough. McIlroy hit a wedge that rolled out to tap-in range, while Thomas missed a 10-foot par putt, a two-shot swing.
Thomas closed with a pair of bogeys and still shot 64.
McIlroy finished at 19-under 261 for a two-stroke victory.
Finau holed a 40-foot birdie putt on the 18th for a 64 to finish second while Thomas was third at 14 under. Justin Rose matched the tournament - and course record with a 60 - with three eagles and three bogeys — to tie for fourth with Sam Burns (65) at 14 under.
Cameron Smith (71) was the pick of the Australian's in a tie for 48th at even, while Brett Drewitt (71) finished one over and Cameron Percy (72) two over.
The Canadian crowd was enormous having been kept away since 2019, and thousands surrounded the 18th green as the threesome of McIlroy, Thomas and Finau finished.
The victory was the second for McIlroy this season, adding to his victory in Las Vegas last October in the CJ Cup. He won for the 21st time on the PGA Tour.
Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.