'Soft' Rory McIlroy told once again what he needs to become the next Tiger Woods

Rory McIlroy has been told by Padraig Harrington to stay away from the saga between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, in order to protect his efforts on the course.

McIlroy resigned from the PGA Tour's policy board last November, but had shown interest in making a return as a player director in recent weeks. His comeback application was subsequently rejected by the current crop of player directors, and Harrington believes this was a blessing in disguise for the four-time major winner.

"It takes a lot of time, dedication and sacrifice to play this game at this level," the Irishman told Golf Channel. "The best thing that could have happened is Rory [McIlroy] not getting back on that board. He was being soft by going back to it. It's not the distraction he needs, he needs to be out there playing golf."

And Harrington may well have a point too, after legendary coach Butch Harmon recently echoed the former Ryder Cup captain's sentiments about the importance of dedication.

Harmon worked with both Tiger Woods and Greg Norman, two players who spent longer than anybody as the No. 1 golfer in the world. The renowned instructor recently opened up on the reasoning behind the longevity and dominance of both Woods, highlighting their ability to work harder than others.

"One thing I will tell you about the best players in the world," the 80-year-old coach told On The Road with Iona. "I had two of them I took to No. 1 who were there for a long time. Greg Norman and Tiger Woods. They outworked everybody, they worked harder than everybody. That is because they wanted to stay there.”

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'soft' rory mcilroy told once again what he needs to become the next tiger woods

McIlroy and Woods are two of the sport's greatest names

There is no begrudging McIlroy's work rate to become one of the greatest players of his generation, despite his focus also being split between his play and off-course work in recent years. The Northern Irishman is often one of the first arrivals on tournament days, balancing his work in the gym with golf game on the practice area, especially when things are not going to plan.

McIlroy himself turned to Harmon this year in order to get his game in the best possible spot prior to the Masters in April, the only major title missing from his CV. Highlighting the Northern Irishman's drive to get over the line at Augusta, Harmon said: "We all know how much he wants it.

"This is his chance to complete the career Grand Slam. This is the only one missing. He’s had his opportunities before and they’ve slipped away. So I talked to him about how to relax, how to enjoy himself, and how to enjoy the moment... It sounds easy, but he wants it so bad he just puts an excess amount of pressure on himself. He has just got to relax and play golf which is very easy to say because he wants it so bad."

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