ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – Rory McIlroy’s impressive run of nine consecutive competitive rounds in the 60s on the Old Course came to a stunning end on Friday when the young Northern Irishman carded an 80.
McIlroy’s 17-stroke south-bound swing after his opening 63 is among the worst in major championship history. At the 1999 Open Championship Rod Pampling followed his opening 71 with an 86 (15 strokes) and at last month’s U.S. Open Dustin Johnson closed with an 82 after signing for a third-round 66 (16 strokes).
“It’s just very difficult out there and I let it get away from me. It could have been an 83,” said McIlroy, who is 1 under par and 11 shots off the lead. “There were more downs today than ups, but I did well to par the last three holes.”