Graeme McDowell was left singing the double bogey blues after a bad week for the Irish at Turnberry.

His tally of 17 birdies was only equalled by eventual champion Stewart Cink. But he was frustrated by a total of five double bogeys and a final round 73 that still left him just seven shots outside the play-off on five over.

Wondering what might have been, McDowell groaned: "I just made too many mistakes and compounded my errors. Every time I made a mistake I seemed to make a double bogey.

“Things just didn't seem to happen for me. I played enough good golf to be there or thereabouts, but this game is all about momentum and I didn't seem to have any.”

While McDowell was the leading Irishman in joint 34th, Paul McGinley closed with a 75 for 43rd on seven over with Darren Clarke’s 69 only good enough for 52nd on plus nine.

All three played well enough at times to challenge for the top places but McDowell was easily the most frustrated.

Tied for 14th with McGinley starting the day, he knows that he has no major weaknesses and simply has to improve his all round game to challenge for a major honours.

He said: "I think all around I've just got to get a bit better. I would be the first to admit I struggled with my game a little bit this week.

"I haven't really been hitting it as well as I would have liked to, I've been a wee bit lost with my swing the last couple of months but I felt like I turned the corner a little bit this week.

"I've hit some better shots than I have in a long time and my short game and putting are getting a bit better.

"I don't think there's anything special missing. I feel comfortable in this environment now, I feel like I'm thinking a lot, I just have to keep going really.”

McGinley came to Turnberry looking for a four-round performance for the first time this season but walked away still searching for his consistency.

After two rounds of 71 and a Saturday 70, the Dubliner would have needed a closing 66 to force a play-off.

But while he went backwards with six bogeys and just one birdie on his card he insisted that he enjoyed his week.

He said: “It was a great week and I loved ti. But I didn't have any momentum at any stage during the day and it was a battle. It is a battle when the course is so difficult and you are not making anything positive happen.

“I didn't putt very well today and didn't make any putts, which you have got to do on a tough day like today. It was just a day when nothing seemed to go right.

“I was looking forward to it and I was very prepared and thought I was going to have a good day. But it didn't pan out that way. It didn't seem to happen.”

Clarke insisted that he could have gone even lower than 69 in the final round but confessed that his Open ended when he shot 78 on Saturday.

Before heading off for a family holiday in Barbados, Clarke said: “I’m very close to playing well. I’m just throwing in the odd bad one, which is killing me.

“I played really nicely again today. I had a lot of chances and then threw a couple of shots away on 14 and 15;, three putted the 17th after hitting two drivers on the green and missed an eight footer for birdie at the last.

“That’s what I seem to be doing at the minute. I have no excuses yesterday because I played poorly and got what I deserved. I’m just making too many mistakes and throwing in one bad round."