Rory McIlroy's struggles continue with missed cut at Scottish Open

Rory McIlroy's struggles continued in round one of the Scottish Open as Mikko Ilonen produced a flawless performance to surge into a two-shot lead at Dundonald Links.

Reigning Open champion Stenson rebounded from a triple-bogey 7 on his first hole (No. 10) after driving left into thick rough and needing three hacks to get the ball out to shoot level par.

"I was a little bummed that we weren't able to make it back a year ago with some schedule conflicts, but after getting the win here in 2015 at Gullane, I always love playing over here in Scotland", Fowler told reporters.

"In the past I have come over ten days before to play the Open venues and that has worked".

"This year has been a good year already but not near as good as my second half of the season last year". He wanted to see improvement in both his wedge play and putting but failed on both counts in his opening
18 holes.

It was the world No. 4's third missed cut in his last four events - he also failed to make the weekend at the U.S. Open and last week's Irish Open - and the latest low point in an injury-affected 2017 for the four-time major victor.

"It has been a busy year, hectic year, and the Scottish Open is an important part of my preparation for The Open Championship, as you know".

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"But I remember a lot about that tournament, and maybe to this day it's the best golf I've ever played in my career".

"My game feels like it's not far away but it needs that little bit of a push in the right direction, so hopefully this week we can take it up a notch or two".

All but Hend are playing for a place in the field at Birkdale, the big hitting Queenslander playing his third Open Championship in succession after debuting in 2005 and not playing again until 2015.

Fowler, Noren and Stenson are three of four members of the world's top 10 to be appearing at the event, with the other Rory McIlroy.

However, instead the 28-year-old produced a repeat of the recent form which saw him miss the cut in the US Open in June and in the defence of his Irish Open title last week.

"It was very much a sign of the frustration that was building", admitted Shinkwin, who beat Matt Fitzpatrick to win the English Amateur title in 2013 and played alongside the three-time European Tour victor in the Walker Cup later that year.

  • Adam Floyd