The Oban man had moved to eight-under-par with two holes to play in the penultimate circuit in the $9 million Rolex Series event, but, with a birdie-birdie finish in his sights, he was left feeling “livid” after taking a bogey at the par-17th. He did birdie the last for a 69, which moved him to eight-under-par, but, with world No 1 McIlroy having stormed clear of the field on 15-under, MacIntyre wasn’t a happy man as he reflected on the day’s proceedings from his perspective.
“Yip,” he replied to being asked if he felt frustrated. “Doing everything right. You need luck in this game and I’ve got absolutely zero at the moment. I’m as annoyed as I’ve been coming off a golf course shooting three-under-par or whatever I shot.”
He used what happened on the 17th, where Patrick Reed’s ball got stuck up a tree a few groups behind, as an example of how he feels he’s not getting the rub of the green at the moment. “On 17, I’ve flushed a tee shot going for the green and it’s hit a palm tree with a trunk that’s no wider than a foot and goes into a bush,” said the left-hander. “If it doesn’t hit that, it’s an easy pitch and the maximum you make is 4 then birdie the list and you’re nine or ten-under and in the golf tournament. Right now, that bogey has realistically cost me having a chance.”
As was the case in last week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, MacIntyre reckons he’s played well enough from tee to green to be right in the mix rather than sitting just outside the top 20
“It is,” he said of feeling his game is in a good place, “but I’m not here to finish in tenth or 20th place. The way I am playing, I need to be competing. You don’t get weeks like this all the time. The last two weeks have been brilliant tee to green and you need to take advantage at some point. Ach, I’m just livid at the moment. Who knows? Tomorrow could be the low one and you go out and shoot eight-under. I’ve just got a feeling that I’m going to be too far back. When I won in Italy, everything went for me in that last round. Even during the week, there were little breaks. But this week and last week I’m getting punched and I’m not punching back enough.”
David Law sits one behind MacIntyre after also signing for a 69 in the penultimate circuit. “The first two days I drove is as good as I ever have. Today I didn’t drive it well at all yet shot a good score,” said the Aberdonian. “I played good on Thursday and didn’t putt well at all then yesterday I holed some good putts around the turn. Today was just about battling and keeping the attitude as good as it could be because I didn’t really have the game I had the first two days.”