Sun Jul 17 02:01pm EDT
We've come to expect interesting weather conditions at the Open. Driving rain, gusting winds, abundant sun, overcast skies; needless to say, players run the gamut at this major.
The entire field got just that this week, getting relatively pleasant conditions earlier in the week, before things turned sour over the weekend, forcing players to pull out their rain suits and change their game plans.
Some players were able to acclimate, but Rory McIlroy wasn't one of them. The favorite to win the Open at the beginning of the week, McIlroy was just four shots back of the lead going into Saturday, before a 4-over 74 in the third round all but ended his chances of taking home the Claret Jug.
He followed it up with a 3-over 73 on Sunday that included back-to-back bogeys to end his round, leaving McIlroy in a poor mood when he entered the press room.
"I'm not a fan of golf tournaments that the outcome is predicted so much by the weather. It's not my sort of golf," he said.
It's an interesting comment from McIlroy, especially since he grew up playing in these course conditions in Northern Ireland. But just like his third-round 80 at St. Andrews last year, McIlroy got the brunt of the bad weather this week at Royal St. George's.
The Open is a crapshoot when it comes to the forecast. Some guys get all the luck, while others, like McIlroy, seem to get stuck in the most brutal conditions of the week. And for the last two years, he's been in the bad weather camp.
McIlroy's past success in the Open Championship tells you he has the game to contend for the Claret Jug, but like seasoned links golfers, he's going to need to roll with the punches. Not every round he plays across the pond is going to have the perfect conditions he experienced at the U.S. Open.