The 150th Open: Rory McIlroy felt a major challenge 'eclipse' in final round at St Andrews

The 150th Open: Rory McIlroy felt a major challenge ‘eclipse’ in final round at St Andrews

Rory McIlroy finished in the top eight in all four majors in 2022 but is now finishing an eighth straight season without a major win; the former world number 1 finished the week 18 under at St Andrews and two strokes behind Cameron Smith

Last update: 07/17/22 9:23 p.m.

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Rory McIlroy says he’ll have to ‘keep plugging in’ as his wait for a fifth major continues after giving up his lead on the final day of the Open

Rory McIlroy says he’ll have to ‘keep plugging in’ as his wait for a fifth major continues after giving up his lead on the final day of the Open

Rory McIlroy must have regretted another missed opportunity to end his long major drought after squandering a two-stroke advantage in his final round at the 150th Open.

The Northern Irishman took a share of the final round lead at St Andrews and was heavy favorite to lift the Claret Jug at St Andrews and record a fifth major title, only to settle for third place as Smith won a thrilling victory over the Old Course.

McIlroy recorded just two birdies in his bogey-free 70 despite all the regulation greens, the 2014 Champion Golfer of the Year needing 36 putts in a disappointing display on the greens to end the week on 18 under and two strokes in back.

McIlroy carded rounds of 66, 68, 66 and 70 at St Andrews

McIlroy carded rounds of 66, 68, 66 and 70 at St Andrews

“I felt like I didn’t do much wrong today, but I didn’t do much right either,” McIlroy said. “It was just one of those days where I played a really controlled round of golf.

“I did what I needed to, just other than capitalizing on the easier holes – around the bend, nine, 12 and 14. If I had made the birds there from good positions, that probably would have been a different story.

What went wrong for McIlroy?  A look back at some of the key moments from his final lap

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What went wrong for McIlroy? A look back at some of the key moments from his final lap

What went wrong for McIlroy? A look back at some of the key moments from his final lap

“But, look, I got beaten by a better player this week. Twenty under par for four rounds of golf here, that’s really, really impressive play, especially to go out and shoot 64 today to do it. .”

Another great missed opportunity

The 33-year-old birdied the fifth and had two leads at the turn, failing to take advantage of the par-four ninth, despite McIlroy then starting his back nine with a birdie but ending a frustrating Sunday with eight consecutive pars.

Rory McIlroy misses another long eagle attempt on the 10th but sinks the birdie putt to extend his lead

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Rory McIlroy misses another long eagle attempt on the 10th but sinks the birdie putt to extend his lead

Rory McIlroy misses another long eagle attempt on the 10th but sinks the birdie putt to extend his lead

McIlroy could then only watch Smith charge the leaderboard with five consecutive birdies on his way to a back-nine 30, the lowest ever by an Open champion, with Cameron Young then snatching second place with an eagle from the last. hole.

“I’m going to regret a few kind of missed putts that slipped, but it’s been a good week overall,” McIlroy added. “I can’t be too discouraged because of how this year has gone and this year.

An emotional Cameron Smith says it was

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An emotional Cameron Smith says it was ‘unreal’ to get his hands on the Claret Jag after a sensational performance on the final day of the 150th Open Championship

An emotional Cameron Smith says it was ‘unreal’ to get his hands on the Claret Jag after a sensational performance on the final day of the 150th Open Championship

“I play one of the best golf courses I have played in a long time, so just keep knocking on the door, and a day will open up.

“At the end of the day, it’s not life or death. I will have other chances to win the Open Championship and other chances to win major tournaments. This is the one I have. feel like I’ve let it slip, but there will be other opportunities.” “

The open verdict

July 18, 2022, 5:30 p.m.

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What future for McIlroy?

McIlroy’s third-place finish caps a season where he has finished no worse than eighth in majors, the first time he has finished in the top 10 in every major in a calendar year, giving him gives a lot of confidence for the home stretch of the PGA. Tour campaign.

Cameron Smith produced three superb shots on the 18th hole at St Andrews to win the 150th Open Championship

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Cameron Smith produced three superb shots on the 18th hole at St Andrews to win the 150th Open Championship

Cameron Smith produced three superb shots on the 18th hole at St Andrews to win the 150th Open Championship

The former world No. 1 will now take the next three weeks before returning to compete in the PGA Tour season-ending play-offs next month, with his next event the FedEx St Jude Championship in Memphis August 11-14. live on Sky Sports.

“I have some time to rest and recuperate and try to take the positives, learn from the negatives and move on,” McIlroy added. “I’m playing well. Again, it’s been one of the best seasons I’ve had in a long time.

“I want to finish the season well. I want to finish the season well. There is still golf to be played. The major season is unfortunately over, but I still feel like there is still a bit of play left.”


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