Holmes sets pace as McIlroy cards nightmare 79 at Open

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He didn't have his first birdie until the 15th hole, which he sarcastically celebrated, and all signs are pointing to a missed cut, unless he's somehow able to feel better for Friday's second round. And I fought through it.

"It felt normal to me".

Scott was in the group behind Duval but had to play through when the American former world No.1 chopped around for an age in chalking up an extraordinary 14 on the par-5 seventh hole.

New Zealand golfer Ryan Fox made Open Championship history on day one at Royal Portrush Golf Club by carding the first back nine of 29 in 148 stagings of golf's oldest Major. Wasn't hitting it solid.

It wasn't the only ghastly moment of the first round, as tournament favourite Rory McIlroy also required eight shots on his opening hole. His follow-up attempt off the tee found heavy rough and from there he struck his next shot into an unplayable lie in a bramble bush.

The 30-year-old four-time major victor missed a birdie putt on the second and then bogeyed the par-three third after his tee shot went through the green into rough.

Rory McIlroy's first round at the Open Championship got off to a rough start. That says plenty because he had the ball on a string in the final round of the 2018 PGA Championship at Bellerive, and he had total control of his golf ball during the 2018 British Open at Carnoustie.

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Woods has not played since the US Open last month, and his appearances have been less frequent over the years as he allows his body to rest more between tournaments. But then the wheels came completely off with five bogeys in six holes.

Three-putting from 4 feet for a double at the par-3 16th also left the Northern Irishman shaking his head, and a triple-bogey 7 at No. 18 saw him stumble home for an 8-over 79.

Then came No. 4, a long par 4 along the right side of the course heading toward the North Atlantic coast. "You just push on and see where I'm at and throw the rain gear on and hide under the umbrella a little bit, and when it's my turn, I'll just go out and hit one".

"It would obviously mean the world to me to win, just like winning at Hoylake meant the world", said McIlroy after finishing well down the field at the Scottish Open on Sunday.

"And I'm really happy with what I have done this week. It was a pretty tough hole anyway". The fact that McIlroy once shot a 61 on the course as a 16-year-old only added to the buzz. "But look, I think four-under is a great score on that course and I'll take it any day". "I didn't put it in the fairway enough to play".

Duval, who plays sparingly now because of work with Golf Channel, liked his form when he arrived and even opened with two birdies to get his name on the leaderboard during a morning start.

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