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#pounditFriday, July 12, 2024

Rory McIlroy chokes away US Open with 2 brutal missed short putts

Rory McIlroy stands over a short putt

Rory McIlroy had a chance to win his second U.S. Open on Sunday, but his infamous putting woes returned down the stretch.

McIlroy began the final round at Pinehurst No. 2 in North Carolina three shots back of 54-hole leader Bryson DeChambeau. McIlroy had the putter going early and made four birdies in five holes at one point. But the wheels came off at the par-4 16th hole.

Coming off a bogey at 15, McIlroy was still 7-under and had a 1-shot lead over DeChambeau. The four-time major champion had a putt inside of three feet to save a par at the 16th, but he pulled it and ended up with another bogey.

The problems didn’t end there. McIlroy went into the 18th hole tied at 6-under with DeChambeau. DeChambeau had also gotten into trouble off the tee behind McIlroy, so all Rory had to do was make a par to essentially guarantee himself a playoff at worst. He missed another extremely short putt and closed out his round with three bogeys in four holes.

DeChambeau, who won his second U.S. Open, still deserves plenty of credit. He made par on the 18th with an incredible bunker shot.

Still, McIlroy’s putting issues may be the biggest takeaway. The 35-year-old has struggled with short and mid-range putts in recent years, which is one of the primary reasons he has not won a major in a decade. The performance at Pinehurst is not going to help his confidence.

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