GOLF: McIlroy changes clubs for South African Open

Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland plays a shot on the first hole during the third round of the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at Trump National Doral Blue Monster Course

World number two Rory McIlroy tees off Thursday in the South African Open hoping a change of clubs will not trigger a loss of form.

The last time the 27-year-old from Northern Ireland made his seasonal debut with new equipment was four years ago, and he initially struggled to adapt.

It was the only time in the past eight years that the four-time major winner finished outside the top five in his first appearance of the year.

The withdrawal of Nike from club manufacturing forced McIlroy to change and he has spent several weeks in Dubai experimenting with various brands.

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