Rory McIlroy's run of missed cuts continued as a second-round 79 put him out of the Memorial Tournament. Photograph: Jason Mowry/Icon SMI/Corbis
Two days after jesting that two-day weeks were not good for him, Rory McIlroy missed his third successive cut at the Memorial tournament on Friday. The world No2 battled to a seven-over-par 79 in cold, wet and windy conditions at Muirfield Village, finishing well down the second-round leaderboard at six-over 150.
The Northern Irishman's failings were in stark contract to the form of the former world No1 Tiger Woods, who looked back to his best as he posted a near faultless round of 69 to lie one shot behind the tournament leader Rory Sabbatini of South Africa at the halfway point. Woods sunk five birdies while McIlroy did not have one on his card and wound up with two double-bogeys, one at the par-five 11th where he remarkably hit a shot backwards into water and another at the 14th, where he drove into water.
The 23-year-old covered the back nine in five-over 41 to miss the projected cut by three shots.
McIlroy had previously missed the cut at the PGA Tour's elite Players Championship last month and then failed to advance at the European Tour's PGA Championship at Wentworth last week. This is the first time he has failed to make the weekend's play at three consecutive tournaments.
The slump puts into question McIlroy's ability to mount a serious defence of the US Open title he won in record breaking fashion last year.
He is now left with only next week's St Jude Classic to try to get his game back in order before the US Open gets underway at the Olympic Club in San Francisco in a fortnight's time.
Update June 02, 2012