Golf

Rory McIlroy shoots six over at Memorial Tournament

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Rory McIlroy shot a 78 first-round at the Memorial Tournament in Ohio as his miserable run of form continued.

The Northern-Irishman failed to make the cut last week at the BMW PGA Championship in Wentworth and the World number two is in danger of repeating that.

With only two weeks to go until the US Open McIlroy acknowledges he's had a bad year and knows he must improve his game soon.

The round of 78 meant that McIlroy ended six over the par despite a birdie on his first hole, the 10th.

However, that was as good as it got for McIlroy as a double bogey on the 12th soon wiped out his earlier good work.

He then dropped a further three shots on his way to the 18th and started his back nine in similar fashion, dropping three shots. A birdie on the fifth didn't go far in improving the Northern-Irishman's mood.

Things got worse for McIlroy when he missed two great opportunities late on to pull shots back.

McIlroy rued those missed putts, something that is becoming all too familiar for him.

 "I hit a few shots, especially around the front nine, in the water and stuff. It was just a bit of a struggle out there," he told SkySports.

"That's sort of been my big miss all of this year is leaving that shot out to the right," the two-time major champion said.

"It cost me today, obviously."

McIlroy's progression in the Memorial Tournament hangs in the balance and he knows a low round is needed on Friday in order to make it to the weekend.

"I need to shoot something like 66 or 65 to probably make the weekend. That will be the target tomorrow, try to shoot the lowest score possible and see what happens."

South Africa's Carl Schwartzel leads the way with a seven-under-pay 65 with Tiger Woods shooting a one-under-pay 71.


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