US Open champion Graeme McDowell hit double trouble to slip six shots off the pace in Killarney.

The Portrush star got to two under with eight to play before a three-putt double bogey six at the 11th killed his round.

He felt a 59 was on this week but despite settling for a 70, he insisted he’s not out of the running.

He said: “I haven’t played myself out of the golf tournament.  I just need to sharpen up across the board and hit more fairways.

“I said someone would go super low this week, but you can defend this golf course by hiding the pins away because the greens are very undulating and very sloping.”

Feeling he’d missed a chance to go low after taking 32 putts, he added: “The greens were quite tricky and birdies were hard to come by. 

“The golf course was there for the taking a little bit.  You are not going to get an easier day around this place but some of the pins were on tough little slopes.

“I played well for about ten or 11 holes, and had a real sloppy three-putt on the 11th and that just kind of stopped my momentum. 

“I was starting to get into a bit of a groove at that point and hit an average chip and my ball  my putt on 11 just bumped left going up to the hole.

“I got a horrible bobble on my next putt.  Walked off with a double there and couldn’t recover.”