ABERDEEN, Scotland (AP) — The second-round jinx that has afflicted Rory McIlroy this season struck once again at the Scottish Open on Friday when he followed up a course-record 64 with a 7-over 78 that left him just above the cut mark.
McIlroy has failed to build on fast starts in a frustrating first half of 2014 and it is now becoming a mental issue for the former world No. 1.
“Having to talk about it, it’s always being brought up, it’s sort of in your mind,” McIlroy said. “Maybe I put myself under even more pressure to get off to a decent start and shoot a good score.”
“Well, it’s another Friday out of the way,” McIlroy added, laughing. “Now I can go onto the weekend.”
McIlroy has shot first-round 63s three times this season — at the Dubai Desert Classic in January, the Honda Classic in March and the Memorial Tournament last month — and not gone on to win the event.
At the Memorial, he shot 78 in the second round and he shot a 70 in Dubai. At the Wells Fargo Championship in May, he followed up an opening 69 with a 76.
Brutal winds were to blame for his latest implosion, with McIlroy dropping six shots in seven holes around the turn at Royal Aberdeen to slip down the leaderboard after being the overnight leader.
“I’d be much happier standing here after shooting a couple of 71s but that’s not the case,” McIlroy said. “It hasn’t been the case all year. I’ve got off to great starts and just fell away.”
McIlroy’s only win this season came at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth in May.