'Lost' Rory McIlroy is off the pace at Irish Open
Thursday 27 June 2013
Rory McIlroy's desperate search for form before The Open next month was again fruitless as he struggled to a two-over-par 74 in the first round of the Irish Open at Carton House, County Kildare.
McIlroy, who carded two birdies and four bogeys including one at the last, said on Wednesday that he had felt "suffocated" by the affection shown him by thousands of fans at recent Irish Opens but he was still determined to enjoy himself.
The world No 2 said he felt "a little lost at the moment" but promised there would be none of the club-throwing or club-bending antics which marked his indifferent showing at the US Open two weeks ago.
"It definitely wasn't the right thing to do," McIlroy said when asked about his tantrums in his final-round 76. "It doesn't set a good example.
"Something I've felt in a couple of Irish Opens is suffocated, having that burden and pressure and expectation. But the last couple of years I've tried to embrace the whole week, enjoy it and turn all that support into an advantage," he said.
The twice major champion's form has dipped alarmingly this year. In the last five months of 2012 he won four tournaments and rose to the top of the rankings but after changing his club manufacturer he has recorded just one top-five finish in 12 events this year.
At Carton House, McIlroy lies eight shots adrift of the leader, Sweden's Oscar Floren, whose flawless round of six-under-par 66 included four birdies and an eagle.
Latest in Sport
Paul Scholes: Manchester United vs Liverpool - I don't understand why Brendan Rodgers was not more attacking against Basel
Jesus Christ plays for Chelsea - that's what one in five children thinks
Transfer Talk: Nemanja Vidic to return to Manchester United; Hazard to leave Chelsea; Sunderland want Radamel Falcao
Frank Warren column: Don't bet on Amir Khan landing pay day against Floyd Mayweather
Manchester United transfer news: Kevin Strootman move edges closer
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
New era of cheap oil 'will destroy green revolution'
Ukip founder Alan Sked and Nigel Farage 'begged Enoch Powell to stand as a candidate'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant