Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy insists he will not have nightmares about Friday’s hellish round of 80 which ruined his chances of winning the 139th Open at St Andrews.
The world number nine went from hero to almost zero after the strong winds literally blew his title challenge off course.
He had been leading the tournament after an opening 63 equalled the lowest round in a major but found himself in the wrong half of the draw when the worst of the weather came in.
McIlroy recovered impressively with rounds of 69 and 68 to post a eight-under total of 280 and a share of third place.
The 21-year-old admits even without his 80 he may not have been able to catch runaway champion Louis Oosthuizen but he will not let one bad round cloud his judgement on his performance.
“It’s not going to give me nightmares,” he said.
“I’m sure I’ll wake up in the morning and just look the fact I was 16 under for three rounds of golf around St Andrews in the Open, and had just one bad round – it’s fine.
“I couldn’t help but think about it going up the last hole.
“You know, if I had just sort of stuck in a little bit more on Friday and held it together more, it could have been a different story.
“But the other three rounds I played very solidly. After that 80 I felt as if I came back well by shooting seven-under at the weekend.”
McIlroy was keen to focus on the things he did well at the Home of Golf, especially as he could do very little about the weather conditions.
“You know, the game is there, and I can take a lot of positives out of this week,” he added.
“I knew I had a good chance coming in here and it was nice to sort of be there for a while.
“I’m still a bit disappointed to be honest because I know if I could have played anywhere decent on Friday I could have been a lot closer to the lead.
“I’m not saying that I could have got to 17-under but I definitely could have been contending for second place.
“When you start off shooting 63 in any golf tournament, you fancy your chances going into the next three days.
“It just so happened to be it got very windy on Friday and I just didn’t deal with it very well.”