Rory McIlroy got devoured by the conditions at Sandwich and insisted that he won’t change his American-style game to win an Open title.
The Holywood star confessed that he’ll always be a fair-weather golfer and complained that he’s no fan of the the lottery of links golf when the wind howls and the rain lashes down.
Asked if he was adamant about this decision, he said: “Of course.”
Lady Luck turned her back on the US Open champ as he was forced to take a penalty drop from gorse on the third and was penalised a shot on the seventh when the wind moved his ball as he addressed a birdie putt and he walked off with a bogey.
Frustrated after finishing with two bogeys for a 73 that left him tied 25th on seven over, McIlroy said: “It’s been a tough week for me. I felt like I did well the first couple of rounds, and I just struggled a bit in the bad weather at the weekend.
“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.
“I’m disappointed with the way I finished obviously, but I’ll just have to wait until next year to try and make a good run at this tournament.
“I’’m looking forward to getting back and playing in Akron, playing the PGA and getting back into some nice conditions.
“My game is suited for basically every golf course and most conditions, but these conditions I just don’t enjoy playing in really. That’s the bottom line.
“I’d rather play when it’s 80 degrees and sunny and not much wind.”
Refusing to change his stance on adjusting his game for Open golf conditions, he said: “I’ll have plenty more opportunities to win an Open.
“I’d rather just wait until their is a year of good weather and take my chances then.”
Just five off the lead at halfway, McIlroy’s hopes of winning the Claret Jug ended when he drove out of bounds on the 14th on Saturday and racked up a double bogey seven.
He opened his final round with a birdie at the second but and any hopes of a dramatic title charge were dashed when he racked up a double bogey five at the third after carving his tee shot into a gorse bush.
Forced to take a penalty drop there, McIlroy suffered a KO when he was penalised a stroke when the wind caused his ball to move as he addressed an eight-foot birdie chance at the long seventh.
Summing his week, he said: “I’m bit frustrated. I got a bit down whenever my ball moved on the seventh today. I was just like… I don’t know, it’s just tough.
“You’re looking at an eight-foot birdie putt and then all of a sudden it’s for a par and then you’re a bit scrambled and you miss it and end up making bogey.”
That miss was the last straw for the Holywood hotshot who says he has no intention of changing his style to cope with tough conditions at the Open.
Concerned he would mess up his swing for the rest of the year, he said: “I can do it but it’s just being comfortable doing that, and there’s no point in changing your game for one week a year.
“It’s either that or just wait for a year when the weather is nice.”
Looking forward to the Irish Open next week followed by the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in Akron and the US PGA in steamy Atlanta, he said: “Hopefully if the weather is decent at home. I’m going to spend a few days getting my swing back to where it needs to be.
“The wind sort of messes it up a little bit, so I’ll work for two or three days just working on my swing and getting it back into a nice groove, and then I’ll take it easy and head to the Irish Open.”
As the rain hammered down, McIlroy explained that he has never been a true wind player despite his back to back wins in the West of Ireland and the Irish Amateur Close championships in 2005 and 2006.
He said: “All the amateur tournaments I’ve won, they were played on links courses but they were all relatively calm.
“So I just play better and my game is more suited to calm conditions. Just glad I’m in the clubhouse. I’m just glad I’m in.”
Former Ryder Cup skipper Colin Montgomerie criticised McIlroy’s preparation for the Open and his decision to take three weeks off following his Congressional win.
But McIlroy refused to second guess his build up, explaining: “I knew the golf course as much as I could have, and no, it was just a pity that the weather just didn’t behave itself for me.”
He also shot down suggestions that high expectations took their toll following his spectacular major breakthrough four weeks ago.
He said: “All I was trying to think about was winning this tournament. There’s no point in coming in thinking I’m the US Open champion, I’m going to do well. You can’t really think like that.
“I obviously have high expectations myself, and I know if the weather had have been a little better this week, I probably would have been able to contend a bit more. But it’s just the way it goes.”
Padraig Harrington heaped pressure on McIlroy when hailed him as a player capable of overtaking Jack Nicklaus as the most successful major winner of all time.
But McIlroy says he was never taken in by the hype and always felt it was over the top
He said: “I’ve won three tournaments as a pro, to start talking about winning 18 majors was very premature.”