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Rory McIlroy reveals the flaw he discovered in putting stroke during Irish Open at Ballyliffin

By Gareth Hanna

If it wasn't for a poor putting performance, Rory McIlroy would still be in the chase for the Irish Open title - that's no secret at this stage.

After the first two rounds of the week, he ranked 5th in driving distance, 15th in fairways hit, and T3rd in greens in regulations. Putts per round? 75th.

But the Holywood golfer has revealed the flaw he has discovered in his stroke during his extra practice brought on by the series of missed putts within ten feet on the greens at Ballyliffin.

"This week's been good to realise a few things," he explained. "I got on the mirror the last couple of days and realised that I was aiming a little bit further left than I thought I was and the bad putts were going left and just sort of, you know, at least knowing that, and knowing what I need to do to sort of not do that and start the ball on line.

"I've sort of just got a little bit of a left in my stoke and it's quite similar to what my golf swing is doing at the minute. I'm dragging the club left at impact and same with the putting. I need to try to release it straight down the line a little bit more and if I do that and I start to hit putts on line, hopefully they will start going in.

"So at least it's been a good week for that in terms of what I need to do going forward. Look, if that's a habit that's crept in, it's not going to disappear overnight. I'm going to have to work on it for a few days."

You can bet your back side he'll be doing plenty of working on it after he finishes out tomorrow's final round ahead of this month's Open Championship at Carnoustie.

And he feels the competitive action on the Glashedy Links will stand him in good stead come his bid for a fifth major title.

"Tee-to-green has been really good. The work I've done the last couple of weeks has started to bed in, which is really nice and again I've got one more competitive start tomorrow before The Open Championship and sign off with a good one hopefully and at least give myself some momentum going into there," he said.

"I think Carnoustie will play a little longer. Here I hit driver more today and had a lot of wedges in. Maybe not going to do"that quite so much at Carnoustie.

"But yeah, the bunkering and having to hit the ball in play, you know, it's very similar to what you need to do over there. I thought this week was a good test of that and it is good. I haven't played links golf in a while, so it's nice to get the feel of it again and I'm sure I'll play some links golf next week on my week off and get ready for Carnoustie."

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