Rory McIlroy has shrugged off his Open Championship heartbreak, and says the positive memories of St Andrews far outweigh what happened in July.
The world No. 2 looked set to lift his ninth major when leading the Open Championship, but Cameron Smith produced a blistering back nine to claim the Claret Jug at St Andrews.
McIlroy admitted afterwards that it was a tough defeat to swallow, but he bounced back to win the FedEx Cup for a record third time.
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St Andrews is likely to host the Open again in 2027, although that has still to be confirmed, and McIlroy feels he will get a chance to contend for the major when it returns to the home of golf.
“I have had so many great memories over the years,” McIlroy said of St Andrews. “It is where I got my Tour card, and played two Open Championships here - played great in both of them.
“I have had so many great memories here and those memories far outweigh what happened in July.”
McIlroy feels it would be a mistake to dwell on the agony of one setback compared to many positive memories - such as playing alongside his dad at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

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“I wish things would have worked out differently, but at the same time St Andrews means a lot more to me than trying to win a Claret Jug here,” he said. “I have been coming here for so many years. It has been a big part of my life, and I don’t think I would be doing myself justice if I did not see all the good things St Andrews has given me and provided me over the years.“
McIlroy is playing some of the best golf of his career, and is hopeful that he will get further chances to contend at the home of golf.
“I am very grateful to be able to play here, experience it, the memories,” the 33-year-old said. “I will have other chances to win Claret Jugs around here so it was not my last chance.
“Hopefully if I can keep playing the way I am playing then when the Open rolls around in five years’ time, I'll have another good chance.”
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