Harrington has no fears for McIlroy ahead of Open
Padraig Harrington believes Rory McIlroy will be well prepared
for next week’s British Open even though he hasn’t played since
winning the U.S. Open.
The break will be more than three weeks by the time the
22-year-old Northern Irishman tees it up at the British Open at
Royal St. George’s.
”He’s very familiar with links golf and he will play quite a
bit of links golf in those three weeks at home,” three-time major
winner Harrington said Tuesday. ”In terms of getting used to it,
that shouldn’t be an issue. He doesn’t seem to have any issue in
terms of competitiveness not playing.
”He knows what he’s doing. If you can win by eight shots by not
playing the week before, I’d stick to that routine.”
Former Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie felt it would have
been in McIlroy’s interests to have played at least one event
between the majors.
Sixteen days have passed since McIlroy’s stunning U.S. Open
victory, when he broke several records, and he continues to be the
talk of the tour.
His preparations for the third major of the year have come under
scrutiny, with Montgomerie saying on Monday that McIlroy could find
himself ”mentally tired” dealing with the expected barrage of
back-patting in the days leading up to the British Open.
”There are going to be so many people wanting to congratulate
him. Whether it was (last week’s) French Open or the Scottish Open
(starting Thursday), he could have got that out of his system and
out of the way so he can start the Open afresh,” said Montgomerie,
still looking for his first major title. ”Now he’s got that ahead
Harrington acknowledged that McIlroy’s buildup to the tournament
in Sandwich, southeast England, which begins July 14, will be
hectic but said having a major title to his name will help him get
”There’s always that external stuff building up and it does
make it harder,” said the Irishman, who has fallen to No. 57 since
winning the last of his three majors – the PGA Championship at
Oakland Hills in 2008.
”But the advantage is, if you get through that and you get to
the last nine holes and you are in contention, the fact you have
done it before and you’ve already got one certainly eases the
pressure on you.”
McIlroy plans to visit Royal St. George’s this week.