McIlroy, tournament host and defending champion, shot 73 in the second round at Portstewart Golf Club. He’s at 1 over, overall, well outside the projected cutline of 2 under.
“I’m frustrated. I felt like I was making some good ground – obviously not getting close to the lead, but being around for the weekend," McIlroy said, adding that the biggest frustration came on and around the greens.
“My short game, in general, it’s just silly mistakes," he said. "I’m just not being very efficieint with my scoring and that’s why I’m making it difficult for myself. Just need to tidy up the short game a little bit; I feel like the long game is there."
McIlroy began the day at even par and gave himself a shot at competing over the weekend, making the turn in 1-under 35. He added another birdie at the par-5 fourth – his 13th – to get to 2 under.
He then bogeyed the sixth and failed to birdie the par-5 seventh. Any chance he had of making the cut came to a crashing halt with a double bogey at the par-4 eighth.
“The bogey on the par 3, it sort of just stopped me in my tracks a little bit, and not birdieing the par 5 after that to get it back," McIlroy said. "Just frustrated with how I played and just really disappointed that I’m not out here over the weekend.”
“Obviously, I might have a few commitments here this weekend, but I need to practice," he said. "I need to get sharp and get ready for next week and ultimately for The Open in a couple week’s time.”