Michael Block reaction to being paired with McIlroy mid-interview says it all
Club pro Michael Block was stunned to learn that he would be paired with golf superstar Rory McIlroy in the final round of the PGA Championship.
Block, 46, is the head pro at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in California and is one of 20 club pros in the field at Oak Hill Country Club. But rarely do the club pros compete alongside some of golf's best, and Block was left with little words after finding out he was paired with McIlroy for Sunday.
"Are you serious?" Block said mid-interview when he found out. "Wow. That should be fun. We're going to have a good time... Really? Oh boy."
And with Block's stunned reaction going viral, McIlroy sent the golfer, who does lessons for about £100, a classy message ahead of their meeting. "Looking forward to it, Michael," World No.3 McIlroy tweeted.
Prior to learning about his pairing with McIlroy, Block touched on the possibility of playing with the golf great. "If I'm paired with Jon Rahm or Rory [McIlroy] or -- I have no idea how these guys are doing, have not looked at the leaderboard," he said.
"I don't know who is going to make the cut. Yeah, that could be kind of huge for me, but at the same time I play with Patrick [Cantlay] all the time. He is No 4 in the world. It's golf. I'm ripping it, and I'm putting it."
Block's weekend wasn't expected to tip over into Sunday but a brilliant third round 70 saw him be tied at 8th. And that 8th spot was enough to see him be paired with McIlroy, who is hoping to end a nine-year drought without a major.
However, the 34-year-old finds himself five shots behind Brooks Koepka. Alongside playing with McIlroy, Block has added incentive to finish strong with a top-four finish worth an invite to next year's Masters.
Should a top-four finish be a step too far, a top-15 would earn him another invite to the PGA Championship and a two-way tie for third would be worth a special temporary membership on the PGA Tour for Block.
Block was confident of getting a good result this weekend. "I feel like I've got the game this week to compete, to tell you the truth," he said earlier this week. "I've made the cut, which is obviously, like I told you, a huge goal.
"I feel like I could shoot even par out here every day. I feel like at the end of the four days that that might be a pretty good result."