The Ulsterman opened the Dubai Desert Classic with a bogey free seven-under-par 65

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McIlroy “Ahead Of Schedule” After Flawless 65 In Dubai

Rory McIlroy’s 2018 season has got off to a flyer.

The four-time major winner finished in a tie for 3rd place last week at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and has got off to a great start at the Dubai Desert Classic.

The 29-year-old shot a bogey-free 65 on day one, and revealed he left some shots out there, to lie just two back of the lead.

WATCH: Rory McIlroy’s 30-minute warm-up routine for golf

Incredibly, McIlroy has made just one bogey in his first 90 holes of 2018.

He’s now in a great position to win this event for the third time and seal his first victory since the 2016 Tour Championship.

McIlroy told Sky Sports, “I didn’t expect to play as well as I did last week, and it’s been nice to continue that into this week.

“I’m ahead of schedule right now, but I don’t mind that.

“Not being able to play to my best last year was something that I was very frustrated with.

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“I’m really happy with where my body is, where my game is and this is just a progression of what I’ve seen over the past couple of months, which has been nice.

“I knew if I got into a rhythm that some would fall. I feel like I left a few out there but the end of the day, 65, you’re not going to complain about that.”

McIlroy was playing with fellow Ryder Cup stars Henrik Stenson and defending champion Sergio Garcia.

Stenson opened with a two-under-par 70 and Garcia shot a five-under-par 65.

Interestingly, both winners of this tournament in the last two years – Danny Willett and Sergio Garcia – have gone on to win the Masters…might that be playing on McIlroy’s mind?

Have you been impressed with McIlroy’s play so far in 2018?

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