PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – It’s become a familiar refrain, and Rory McIlroy knows it.
“I've been saying I'm close for a very long time. Feels like I've been saying I'm close all year,” he said on Sunday at The Players.
McIlroy finished tied for 12th, his fifth top 15 finish in his last six starts, but that didn’t stop the Northern Irishman from lamenting his inability to break through for his first victory in 2016.
Although he said his tee-to-green game has been solid, and for the week at TPC Sawgrass he ranked second in strokes gained-tee to green, he talked of too many wasted shots and playing too defensive the last few months.
“I seem to play the wrong shot or I seem to hit a bad shot at the wrong time,” said McIlroy, who closed with a 2-under 70 for a 7 under total after derailing his title chances with a third-round 75. “Everything is just not clicking, and hopefully as the summer approaches, everything can start to click and I can go on a run, because I really don't feel like it's too far away.”
Still, his play at the Stadium Course was encouraging, particularly his second-round 64 that included a bogey at his final hole, and he was looking forward to the U.S. Open at Oakmont next month.
The world No. 3 will play next week’s Irish Open, which he hosts, followed by the Memorial before heading up to Oakmont for his first look at the course.
“I’m looking forward to going to a nice, traditional course. Not like we’re playing on the moon,” said McIlroy in a reference to last year’s U.S. Open at Chambers Bay.