Defending Open de France champion Graeme McDowell admits he has work to do on his game after missing the cut at Le Golf National.
The Northern Irishman’s bid for a third successive title in France came to a frustratingly early end, as the former US Open champion’s poor form continued.
McDowell was one of the early starters on Friday after thunderstorms had left 42 players unable to complete their opening rounds on day one, making par at the 18th to close and opening 72 and lie within four of the lead.
However, after a short break McDowell was back out on the course which will stage the 2018 Ryder Cup and slumped to a second round of 78, his worst score in 32 rounds at the venue.
The 35-year-old failed to register a single birdie during his second round, posting three bogeys and two double-bogeys, including at the second after sending his shot in to the hazard, to end the week eight over.
“I struggled to get in the fairway mainly and, as firm and as fast as this course is, if you’re not hitting the fairway you have a bit of a problem getting close to the flag,” McDowell said. “It’s just a bad first nine both days.
“I rescued it coming in last night but it was a fast turnaround from a 9pm finish last night to an early start this morning and I just didn’t come out of the blocks this morning at all.
“It’s very disappointing, this course has been so good to me over the years, just not to be this year. It’s a work in progress, I’ll keep grinding and it’s a big summer ahead.”
It leaves McDowell without a top-ten finish since February’s Dubai Desert Classic, with the Ryder Cup star in danger of dropping out of the world’s top 50 for the first time since 2009.
“I have a lot of technique in my head to be honest and I have to strip that out,” McDowell told Sky Sports 4. “I’ve got to get back to basics and try to clear the mind.
“I’ve been working too hard on trying to get the technique fixed and been making it worse. I know it’s in there; you take the rough with the smooth and it’s been a great three or four years. I will dig this out and I’ll be back.”
Watch day three of the Open de France this weekend live on Sky Sports 4 – your home of golf.