McIlroy close as McGirt wins Memorial

Rory McIlroy

McIlroy is aiming to win a second US Open and fifth major title at Oakmont later in June

Rory McIlory hit a four-under-par 68 to finish two shots behind winner William McGirt at the Memorial Tournament.

The Northern Irishman had six birdies and two bogeys in his round to set the clubhouse lead in Ohio on 13 under.

But Americans Jon Curran (70) and McGirt (71) finished on 15 under, the latter after holing a four-foot putt to force a play-off at Muirfield Village.

McGirt won with a par at the second extra hole after both players missed the green with their approach shots.

Curran, who missed a 30-foot putt to win his first PGA Tour title on the first extra hole, found a fairway bunker with his tee shot when they replayed the 18th, flew the green with his second and floated his third 30 feet past the pin before two-putting for bogey.

McGirt, who had also found the greenside rough with his second shot, chipped to seven feet and holed the uphill putt for par to record his first PGA Tour win.

“It was a struggle all day but to get your first win is pretty special,” said the 35-year-old, who had been in a three-way tie for the lead overnight with compatriots Matt Kuchar and Gary Woodland.

Fellow American Dustin Johnson, who was 16 under at the turn, had a two-over-par back nine to finish third on 14 under.

Kuchar and Woodland both posted one-over-par 73s to finish tied with McIlroy on 13 under.

McIlroy, the world number three, immediately turned his thoughts to the US Open which starts in Pennsylvania on Thursday, 16 June.

“I expect a little bit of a tougher test at Oakmont but I feel like my game’s in good shape,” said the 27-year-old.

“Off the tee I was really good this week, and I feel like my putting improved quite a lot.

“My iron play hasn’t been great. I’m just not hitting the ball close enough to the flag with my mid-irons.

“That’s what I’ll be working on primarily from now until Thursday week.”

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