He has been drawn to face the man he beat in the 2015 final, American Gary Woodland, as well as Emiliano Grillo and Soren Kjeldsen in the group stages at Austin Country Club, which start today.
Asked what makes him a good match play competitor, Rory McIlroy said: “A ruthless streak, selfishness, in a way. And pride. I’m too proud to be beaten.
"I won’t let anyone get up on me. I sort of think too much of myself to let anyone do that to me. So that’s why I’ve always enjoyed match play.
Rory McIlroy is determined to show his ruthless streak
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Rory McIlroy will go up against old rival Gary Woodland
“Some guys think that you can wear your opponent down by putting them under pressure on every hole. Hitting every fairway, hitting every green and being really consistent. That’s one way to play match play.
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“But then the other way is you can be a bit erratic, but if your short game is saving you and you’re holing putts and you’re getting it up and down from bad positions, that can frustrate your opponent as well.
"I feel I can wear my opponents down just by hitting quality shots and mentally beating them by them saying to themselves, this guy isn’t going to miss a shot today, so I better be on my game. That makes a good match player.”