Rory McIlroy Shoots 5 Over in Final Round to Close Inconsistent 2020 US Open

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 20, 2020

Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, watches his shot from the second tee during the final round of the US Open Golf Championship, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Mamaroneck, N.Y. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Charles Krupa/Associated Press

Rory McIlroy brought his 2020 U.S. Open to a close Sunday, finishing with a five-over 75 in the final round at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York.

Going six over in the second round largely doomed McIlroy's chances of winning a second U.S. Open title. He entered the day six shots behind tournament leader Matthew Wolff, who was five under through 54 holes.

When he headed for the clubhouse, McIlroy was tied for eighth at six over.

He got off to a rough start, beginning Sunday with a double bogey on No. 1. His drive landed safely on the right side of the fairway, but his approach rolled all the way to the front edge of the green. Breaking out the putter, he watched his next shot do the same thing.

Two more putts later, it was a six for McIlroy.

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Conditions at Winged Foot did the golfers few favors, with the 2011 U.S. Open champion not immune.

If that wasn't enough to take McIlroy out of the title hunt for good, he bogeyed Nos. 4 and 7 to fall to four over for the round.

A pair of birdies on Nos. 9 and 11 helped him build some positive momentum, yet those offered little relief in the bigger picture.

McIlroy fell a few spots down the leaderboard later on the back nine thanks to a bogey on No. 15 and a double bogey on the next hole.

During the 2020 PGA Tour season, McIlroy was 122nd in strokes gained putting (minus-0.071), per PGATour.com. The U.S. Open proved to be more of the same. According to the tournament's official site, he averaged 1.89 putts per hole in the final round and lost 1.30 putting strokes.

Since the season resumed in June, the Northern Irishman has one top-10 finish, which came with a smaller field in the Tour Championship. He's on pace to make it two by the end of Sunday, but his general performance record won't improve if his issues with the putter continue to linger.

McIlroy's final crack at a major title in 2020 will come in the Masters, which was postponed until Nov. 12 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. A green jacket has proved elusive for the 31-year-old, who has a little under two months to prepare for his trip to Augusta, Georgia.