Rory McIlroy, the No. 3 player in the world who has had the season from hell, finished Saturday with miraculous back-to-back birdies to get to 3-under for a Sunday shot at his second straight PGA Championship. As some of the players out early ahead of Rory on the course demonstrated, there are plenty of birdie chances out there for the young Northern Irishman to cut into that six-shot hole he started in. The leaders, Jim Furyk and Jason Dufner, are also prone to recent Sunday shakiness so Rory was absolutely in it to start his final round.
A couple birdies by McIlroy on the front side, and avoiding bogey, would put tons of pressure on the groups behind him. Well, it started well enough for McIlroy with a birdie on his third hole, a par-3. But he backed that up with a missed bunny birdie putt on the next hole, Oak Hill's easiest and just one of two par-5s on the classic course. It was a must-make birdie hole, and he blasted his putt past the edge:
Ok, so just a big missed chance but at least he was still one better than when he started the day. His chances at a comeback, however, were officially extinguished two holes later on Oak Hill's fifth. McIlroy hit his second shot into the hazard which runs through nine of 18 holes on the course:
That's a tough break, with the false front gobbling up his ball on a green that's been one of the hardest on the course. But McIlroy didn't exactly limit the damage, overcorrecting things and sailing his drop shot way over:
On his delicate flop back down to the hole, he still couldn't get it on the green, leaving the ball on the back fringe.
And that is how you make a triple bogey to end your shot at a third major in three years.