Tuesday 24 October 2017

McDowell struggles to cope with 'PMS' up after sign-off

GRAEME McDowell has booked a dinner date with Padraig Harrington to learn how to cope with PMS -- Post Major Stress.

McDowell's life has changed utterly since his fantastic US Open win at Pebble Beach in June. Apart from the demands on his time and the constant attention, there's a whole shock to the emotional and body-mind system which he never expected.

That's affecting his game, and while he is thrilled with his Major-winner status, there has to be a period of adjustment. How long it takes he doesn't know, hence the call for Harrington's advice.

Speaking after his level-par 71 for three-under-par 281 in total, McDowell said: "It's been much more difficult than I ever imagined. I mentioned to Padraig on Thursday that I would like to go to dinner with him next week.

"I told him I was struggling with it all a little bit and it's been tough to keep my focus, and he said, 'welcome to my world'.

"You dream of achieving these things but dealing with them is another thing. They're good problems to have and I wouldn't change it for anything but it's frustrating. I didn't want to come here and not compete."

McDowell hit the heights early in his career, winning the 2002 Volvo Scandinavian Masters in only his fourth start as a professional, but a Major title is so different.

"When I won my first event, it was intense for a couple of days and then it went away very quickly. This one has lingered," McDowell said.

"Everyone reminds me of all the time. The level of intensity, just everything you do makes your weeks busier and makes everything else more difficult.

"I'm still learning how to deal with that, but hopefully I'll have a chat with Padraig next week."

Trainor marks his adventure

BARRIE Trainor, the only PGA Irish Region pro to make the cut, was first out yesterday morning at 7.15, but he wasn't complaining after filing a level-par 71 to complete his '3' Irish Open adventure for this year.

Trainor (29), a Team Ireland player, had a marker on Saturday and yesterday as he was the odd man out of the 71 who qualified for the last two rounds.

On Saturday, Dubliner Gary Cullen played alongside him and yesterday Dan Sugrue from Killarney, who didn't make the cut, was on dawn patrol.

"I really appreciated the two lads helping me out. They were great," said Trainor.

The Ulsterman did well to make the cut. His Saturday round was unfortunate, with a triple-bogey on the eighth and a double-bogey on 18 proving particularly costly, but a solid 71 yesterday steadied the ship.

Trainor, from Warrenpoint, County Down, is PGA-qualified. Now, all he wants to do is gain his Tour card.

Warren number's

up after sign-off

MARC Warren of Scotland and Sweden's Martin Erlandsson were the Blues brothers singing a sad Sunday song.

Warren shot 70 for two-under-par 282 and duly signed his card. He had the right total, but playing partner Mark Foster had transposed his scores on holes 13 and 14.

Warren was disqualified, costing him between €10,000 and €15,000. "My card said 3-4 on those holes instead of 4-3. It's absolutely nothing to do with Mark (Foster). It's my fault," he said. Robert Rock made the same mistake with the same holes on Thursday and was also disqualified.

Meanwhile, Sweden's Martin Erlandsson had a horrible 11 on the 211-yards, par-three sixth.

Erlandsson, who came into the week 182nd on the Race to Dubai, started the round on level par for the tournament and finished it on eight over thanks to his disaster on the 6th.

His five-iron tee shot finished in the water and from there it got worse, with three more dunkings in the aqua. Erlandsson said: "I got mad, and the water just got bigger and bigger."

Harrington the king of champs

PADRAIG Harrington topped the table of five past Irish Open winners who made the cut. They were, in descending order according to their scores: Harrington, 2007, 268 (-16); Brett Rumford, 2004, 275 (-9); Shane Lowry, 2009, 279 (-5); Richard Finch, 2008, 281 (-3); Patrick Sjoland, 2000, 290 (+6).

Irish Independent

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