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Irish Open: Graeme McDowell and Darren Clarke miss cut

Graeme McDowell will have the weekend off after a disappointing showing at the Irish Open.
Graeme McDowell will have the weekend off after a disappointing showing at the Irish Open.

Both Graeme McDowell and Darren Clarke have missed the cut at the Irish Open after dismal second rounds in tough conditions at Lahinch.

While Ardglass's Cormac Sharvin is challenging at the top of the leaderboard, four behind Zander Lombard, the high profile duo will have the weekend off.

It always was going to be a fight for either of them to make it through, having carded over par rounds on Thursday.

McDowell finished his tournament four over with two rounds of 72.  While Clarke ended up even worse off with a six over par on the day to finish on a 76 on top of his Thursday 71. He was seven off par at the end of the second round.

It's far from ideal preparation for the Open Championship in their hometown Portrush in just two weeks' time.

McDowell does have next week's Scottish Open to use in order to bounce back into form. The 40-year-old is due to tee it up, along with Rory McIlroy, at The Renaissance Club.

It's also worth remembering this was his first outing after a two-week break that followed his joint 16th finish at the US Open. It's only his second missed cut in his last 10 outings.

The duo were far from the only ones to struggle in windy conditions on the County Clare coast, overnight leader Padraig Harrington limping to a three over par 73 after his thrilling seven under par start.

“It really was tough conditions. Three of my bogeys were poor chips from the side of the green. I need to be a lot sharper with my short game," Harrington said.

"You have to stick in there and I was a little better on the back nine so hopefully I have not done too much damage. Four under par is still in it.

“Maybe I have another 63 in me over the weekend. I can see the faults and failings. My swing is a little shorter and tighter on a tight golf course but that’s more mental than physical.”

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