Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

The Open: Graeme McDowell envious of Rory McIlroy

Jealous: Graeme McDowell is envious of his pal Rory McIlroy
Jealous: Graeme McDowell is envious of his pal Rory McIlroy

Graeme McDowell admitted he was envious of Rory McIlroy after his fellow Northern Irishman's victory at the Open Championship.

McIlroy held off the challenge of Sergio Garcia and Rickie Fowler to win at Royal Liverpool by two strokes and capture his third major title.

McDowell performed impressively himself on the final day, shooting a five-under-par 67 to finish in a tie for ninth on 10 under, and was frustrated not to have been challenging higher up.

The 34-year-old, winner of the US Open in 2010, told reporters: "They just asked me in there what my emotions are for Rory, as I watched him walk to the 16th tee box.

"I used the word 'jealousy,' but I think what I really meant was 'envious'.

"Envious because I'd love to walk down the 18th fairway with an opportunity to win the Claret Jug.

"I'd love it to be me. It's the greatest walk in world golf. It's in there inside me somewhere. Some year it will be my year, hopefully."

McDowell has much admiration for McIlroy's achievement, with the 25-year-old having led at Hoylake since the end of the first round.

He said: "I have a huge amount of appreciation for what he's doing and respect for what he is in the game of golf, and how good he is for the game of golf. So, great stuff."

As for his own performance, McDowell regarded the week as a good opportunity to double his major tally missed.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship with his mum at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship with his mum at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy kisses the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Rory McIlroy wins the British Open at Hoylake, Liverpool and the members at Holywood Golf Club celebrate.
Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.
Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy chips out of the bunker on the 18thduring day four of the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy during day four of the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy lifts the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates with the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Terry Carr, Deirdre McGuigan and Julie Carr enjoy champagne at Holywood Golf Club after their very own Rory McIlroy's victory in the Open. Photo Aidan O'Reilly/Pacemaker Press
Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy with the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.
Rory McIlroy wins the British Open at Hoylake, Liverpool and the members at Holywood Golf Club celebrate.

McDowell, who wrapped up his tournament with an eagle three at the 18th hole, said: "I said at the start of the week that this venue was my type of venue – not super long, not a lot of advantage for the big boys to take trouble out of play, good iron play and big flat greens where I can putt well.

"These were greens that I felt I could putt well on and did putt well on. Yes, opportunity missed but could I have caught him (McIlroy)? I don't know."

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