Malaysian Open: Rory McIlroy mastering Malaysia just fine
Double Masters winner Jose Maria Olazabal singled out too much aggression off the tee as the root cause of Rory McIlroy's meltdown at Augusta National.
McIlroy was still leading by a shot standing on the 10th tee, but walked off the final green crestfallen, finishing nine strokes behind Springbok Charl Schwartzel.
It now extends Europe's Masters winning drought to 13 years since Olazabal won a second green jacket in 1999.
But while many have singled out McIlroy's putting woes, next year's European Ryder Cup captain blamed the young Irishman's insistence in sticking with the driver.
“I feel sorry for Rory because for three-and-a-half rounds he led the Masters and you don't want to have to see what he went through,” said Olazabal.
“It is going to be a big learning experience for him, but then what happened to him on Sunday was because of a lack of experience.
“He could have approached the last day very differently. For starters, I would not have been so aggressive with the driver off the tee as there were a couple holes on the front nine and then the 10th where I would not have taken the driver.
“Rory's already very long off the tee and maybe he should have considered not hitting the driver all the time and just find the fairway with his three-wood.
“But he's going to learn a lot from this.”
And McIlroy made a solid return to action after his Masters heartache but it is Sweden's
Alexander Noren who leads the way after the opening round of the Malaysian Open at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club.
McIlroy, who threw away a four-shot lead during the final round at Augusta, carded a three-under-par 69 to end the day in a tie for ninth as part of a group that in
cludes 2010 Open champion Louis Oosthuizen.
Ballymena teenager Dermot McElroy produced an amazing closing round 61 (10 under) at Copt Heath in the English Midlands yesterday to smash the course record and finish fourth in the Peter McEvoy Trophy.