Padraig Harrington has taken a three year step back with his career after slumping to his worst world ranking since 2006.

Game Changer - A billboard at Glasgow Prestwick airport for Harrington's sponsors FTI.Just 12 months after scorching to third in the world by retaining the Claret Jug, the Dubliner is now 16th after his disappointing 65th place finish at Turnberry.

And while he might be a cross between Bernhard Langer and Seve Ballesteros, the man who caddied for those major winning greats is not sure that Harrington is on the right track with his swing changes.

English legend Peter Coleman said: “Whether it is right or wrong, I don’t know. At present it doesn’t look like it’s that good but the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Let’s see when he comes through to the other side.

“Bernhard had the yips four times, changed his putting action four times and came back better. But I can’t understand what Padraig is trying to achieve.

“The yips is a mind thing but Padraig is just working on technique and whether the technique he is working on is right, that is the question.

“I look at some players worldwide and they practice for hours. But if they are practising the wrong thing they are not going to improve. That’s what you have to watch.

“Padraig has won three majors so it can’t be that bad. What he’s got cannot be that bad, so if I was around him I might tell him to tweak it but not to do for major surgery.”

Harrington insists he has not changed his swing but simply tried to improve his ball-striking through a slight change in technique.

Yet it now appears that he has opened a major can of worms with one small change leading to lots of unwanted side effects.

As a result the Dubliner has missed 10 cuts and had just two top-10 finishes in 24 events since he lifted the US PGA title last August.

But Coleman - who guided Langer to two Masters victories and enjoyed more than 50 wins worldwide - believes the Irish ace has the mental strength to come through.

Coleman said: “Padraig is very similar to Bernhard. They set their mind on doing something and invariably they do it.

“In fact, Padraig is like a cross between Seve and Bernhard. Seve was all powerful and wanted everyone out of the way and Bernhard was ultra quiet. Padraig just does his own thing.

“Padraig has the same will to win that Seve had - he would not be beaten. I worked for Seve for a couple of years and he did everything to try to win. His eyes and his demeanour all said that.

“Padraig is the same but I don’t understand how players of that quality go from shooting in the mid 60s to sometimes mid 70s.

“He says he is doing this, that and the other. But is it right? I don’t know.”

Harrington claimed at Turnberry that he struck the ball well but simply failed to convert that into decent scores.

He has certainly shown some improvement over the past two weeks, winning the Irish PGA at The European Club to end a run of five missed cuts in a row before opening with a 69 in the Open.

His driving accuracy is slowly coming back and after insisting that the Open came two weeks too early for him, he could be ready to peak at the US PGA in Minnesota in three weeks’ time.

Reflecting on the Open, Harrington said: “It is hard for me to say I hit the ball great. I could tell you that on 14, 15 and 16 I hit three perfect five irons and played them in one over.

“On another day you play them in two under and everyone says you are playing great. That’s the nature of the game. Stay patient and these things work out. I’m much more positive about my game now than I was last Monday.

“There is still stuff to be worked on, no doubt about that, but I would still say I am better now than a year ago."