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McIlroy aiming to return from injury at WGC-Mexico in March

  • FILE - In this Oct. 27, 2016 file photo, Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, hits a tee shot during the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament at the Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai, China. McIlroy is targeting the Mexico Championship in March as his return to tournament action from injury.  McIlroy aggravated a rib stress fracture while finishing runner-up at the SA Open in Gauteng two weekends ago. Those injuries typically take about six weeks to heal, and he believes he'll be ready to play again in the first World Golf Championship of the year, from March 2-5. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)

    FILE - In this Oct. 27, 2016 file photo, Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, hits a tee shot during the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament at the Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai, China. McIlroy is targeting the Mexico Championship in March as his return to tournament action from injury. McIlroy aggravated a rib stress fracture while finishing runner-up at the SA Open in Gauteng two weekends ago. Those injuries typically take about six weeks to heal, and he believes he'll be ready to play again in the first World Golf Championship of the year, from March 2-5. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this file photo dated Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016, Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland watches the flight of his ball on the 18th hole during the 1st round of the DP World Tour Championship golf tournament in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.  McIlroy has said Tuesday Jan. 24, 2017, he'll be ready to play again soon, and is targeting the Mexico Championship in March 2017, following a rib stress fracture injury. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, FILE)

    FILE - In this file photo dated Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016, Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland watches the flight of his ball on the 18th hole during the 1st round of the DP World Tour Championship golf tournament in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. McIlroy has said Tuesday Jan. 24, 2017, he'll be ready to play again soon, and is targeting the Mexico Championship in March 2017, following a rib stress fracture injury. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, FILE)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this file photo dated Friday, Nov. 18, 2016, Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland plays a shot on the 2nd hole during the 2nd round of the DP World Tour Championship golf tournament in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. McIlroy has said Tuesday Jan. 24, 2017, he'll be ready to play again soon, and is targeting the Mexico Championship in March 2017, following a rib stress fracture injury.(AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, FILE)

    FILE - In this file photo dated Friday, Nov. 18, 2016, Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland plays a shot on the 2nd hole during the 2nd round of the DP World Tour Championship golf tournament in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. McIlroy has said Tuesday Jan. 24, 2017, he'll be ready to play again soon, and is targeting the Mexico Championship in March 2017, following a rib stress fracture injury.(AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, FILE)  (The Associated Press)

Rory McIlroy is targeting the Mexico Championship in March as his return to tournament action from injury.

McIlroy aggravated a rib stress fracture while finishing runner-up at the SA Open in Gauteng two weekends ago. Those injuries typically take about six weeks to heal, and he believes he'll be ready to play again in the first World Golf Championship of the year, from March 2-5.

"I feel like I can maybe get back before that, but if I were to play (the) Honda (Classic) and then go straight to Mexico, I'd be playing two weeks in a row. I'd like to ease my way back in gently," he said on Tuesday.

He said the Mexico Championship in Mexico City was ideal because there was no cut.

"I can see how everything feels, and I have a week off after that," he added.

McIlroy has already missed the Abu Dhabi Championship, and pulled out of the Dubai Desert Classic next week. The injury means he will also miss the Genesis Open in California and Honda in Florida next month.

He put the rib injury down to an extra-busy offseason, when he hit a lot of balls to make a swing change and test drivers.

"My muscle just said, 'We've worked hard, and we don't want to work hard anymore,'" McIlroy said. "I didn't imagine hitting so many balls would lead to this."