Here's how Rory McIlroy is doing so far at the USPGA

Here's how Rory McIlroy is doing so far at the USPGA

Roory McIlroy faced an uphill battle to maintain his brilliant record in the US PGA Championship after getting off to a poor start at Baltusrol on Thursday.

McIlroy lifted the Wanamaker Trophy in 2012 and 2014 and has recorded three other top-eight finishes in seven appearances in the final major of the year.

The world number four was optimistic of turning what he called a B- season into an A+ by claiming his fifth major title on Sunday, but found himself at the wrong end of the leaderboard after nine holes of his opening round.

Starting on the back nine alongside defending champion Jason Day and Open runner-up Phil Mickelson, McIlroy missed from 10 feet for birdie on the 10th and even closer range on the 11th, before saving par from a greenside bunker on the next.

Here's how Rory McIlroy is doing so far at the USPGA

After missing the green on the 13th, McIlroy duffed his chip from the rough and failed to convert from six feet for par, before failing to get up and down from a bunker on the next following a poor drive.

A poor tee shot into more sand on the 16th led to a third bogey of the day, before McIlroy missed from five feet for birdie on the 636-yard 17th and failed to birdie the par-five 18th as well following a wild drive into the trees.

At three over par, the 27-year-old was already eight shots off the pace being set by American Ryder Cup player Jimmy Walker, who had covered the back nine in four under and picked up another shot on the first.

Compatriot Brian Stuard was a shot behind with four holes remaining, with England's Chris Wood - who was playing alongside Walker - and Paul Casey part of the group on two under which also included world number one Day.

Day had birdied the 11th and missed several other good opportunities before picking up a shot on the first, the 28-year-old having only managed one practice round after catching a bug from his son Dash and then spending Tuesday night in hospital after his wife suffered an allergic reaction.

McIlroy's third round of 77 in the Masters was his first without a birdie in 80 major championship rounds and another looked on the cards when he followed a three-putt bogey on the second by missing birdie chances on three of the next four holes.

And at four over par, the four-time major winner was nine shots behind the clubhouse target set by Walker, who had recovered from his only bogey of the day on the sixth with a birdie on the next on his way to a 65.


More in this Section

Cork postman Declan delivers on Everest endurance featCork postman Declan delivers on Everest endurance feat

Ciarán O'Lionaird hits comeback trail to 'repay debt' to himself and CorkCiarán O'Lionaird hits comeback trail to 'repay debt' to himself and Cork

IRFU boss admits Irish players may look to leave country after pandemicIRFU boss admits Irish players may look to leave country after pandemic

EFL announce two positive tests at the same Championship clubEFL announce two positive tests at the same Championship club


Lifestyle

Last week, I wrote about 'small is beautiful' as a key to an improved environment for all living things after this Covid crisis is finally over. As I wrote, I saw, in the mind's eye, the village where I live in west Cork and from which my wife and I are temporarily exiled.Damien Enright: Community spirit can ensure we pull through - together

Fifty years ago, a fox was spotted in Dublin’s St. Stephen’s Green. The unfortunate animal was chased by local ‘gurriers’. It took refuge in a tree but was promptly stoned to death.Richard Collins: Wildlife taking back the streets of our cities

The north pier on Cape Clear has been eerily quiet these last few months as no visitors disembark. The ferry is not unloading boatloads of tourists from Baltimore, 45 minutes away, or from Schull, as it would normally.The Islands of Ireland: Cape Clear tells its side of the story

If the Donegal postman and amateur weather forecaster has it right, we could be in for water shortages in the coming months. Michael Gallagher, who predicted the scorching summer of 2018 and the 2010 freeze-up, says we’ll have a ‘lovely’ summer.Donal Hickey: Demand for water to soar

More From The Irish Examiner