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Golf - Late mistakes drop McIlroy back in bid for fifth major

AFP logoAFP 11/8/2017
CHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 10: Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland putts on the sixth hole during the first round of the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Club on August 10, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Streeter Lecka/Getty Images/AFPCHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 10: Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland putts on the sixth hole during the first round of the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Club on August 10, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Streeter Lecka/Getty Images/AFP © Provided by AFP CHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 10: Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland putts on the sixth hole during the first round of the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Club on August 10, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Streeter Lecka/Getty Images/AFPCHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 10: Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland putts on the sixth hole during the first round of the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Club on August 10, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Streeter Lecka/Getty Images/AFP

A three-hole stretch in the middle of the back nine spelled doom for Rory McIlroy's hopes of grabbing the lead after Thursday's opening round of the 99th PGA Championship. The 28-year-old from Northern Ireland fired a one-over par 72 to share 33rd after 18 holes at Quail Hollow, the layout where McIlroy has twice won US PGA events. But it might have been so much better had he not been stung for a bogey at the par-3 13th, a double bogey at the par-4 14th and missed a four-foot birdie putt at the par-5 15th. "The greens are as firm as I've ever seen, probably any greens at a PGA Championship" McIlroy said. "It was tough." McIlroy, seeking his fifth career major title and third PGA crown, could join Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the only men to win five major titles before turning 30.

AFP

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