With all those around him making it look easy, Shane Lowry was left to rue a cold putter as his hopes of a second Irish Open title dwindled on a stagnant moving day display at Lahinch.
Lowry managed to fire five birdies but also posted three bogeys and a double in an even par effort that has him sitting just outside the top-40 heading into day four.
“It was probably the worst score I could have shot,” Lowry reflected, having struggled with a bout of illness over the past two days.
“I felt like I played all right. Missed a few great chances. My putter was cold today. But look, it was just one of those days. I went there and gave my best and unfortunately it wasn’t good enough. Like I said, I feel like I played decent golf. I just didn’t hole the putts when I needed.
“The 12th hole was a killer,” added Lowry of a double-bogey having hit way left off the tee into heavy hay, the result of which halted any potential momentum.
“I just birdied, a great putt on 11. The only putt I holed all day, to get to 1-under for the day. You’re thinking 12, 13 and 18, a few other chances. I was thinking if I can, maybe 2- or 3-under from there, I can get to 5 or 6 and have a chance of a great week.
“Yeah, look, it is what it is. I’m not too disappointed. I played all right, so there’s nothing I can do about that.”
It had been hoped 10 years after Lowry shocked the golfing world to win his National Open as an amateur that a repeat win was coming but the Clara star was left to reflect on what might’ve been, though no doubt he’ll be wanting to give the crowd something to cheer on Sunday regardless.
“I don’t feel uncomfortable out there this week. I don’t feel the added pressure on me. I feel like there’s a want from everyone and there’s a want from me to do well and I really want to go out there no more than anyone else and shoot 5-under today or 6-under today and give myself a chance going into tomorrow.
“Yeah, look, I gave it my best. There’s nothing I can do. I didn’t hole the putts today. First bad putting round I’ve probably had in a long time. That’s golf. That’s kind of the life as a pro golfer. That’s what it it’s like. You have your good days and your bad days, and unfortunately today had an average day on the greens and that’s what caused me to shoot level par.”
Unfortunately the news was no better for Seamus Power who looked to have resuscitated his hopes of a home charge on Friday. Instead, the West Waterford professional went backwards with a moving day 73 that saw Power drop back to minus-one.
Full Scoring HERE