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Rory McIlroy makes strong start to Scottish Open

Rory McIlroy made a strong start at the Scottish Open, shooting five under par, just one shot behind leaders Maximilian Kieffer and Li Haotong, who both scored 64. This marks McIlroy’s return to golf ahead of The Open next week.

Rory McIlroy, 35, has not played since his disappointing final day at the US Open last month, where he lost a two-shot lead in the last five holes, missing two short putts, and allowing Bryson DeChambeau to win by one shot.

Reflecting on his performance, McIlroy said, “It was a bit of a slow start, a bit up and down. I hit a couple of shots over the first few holes that I guess I haven’t seen in practice over the last 10 days. A bit of a reminder that golf isn’t as easy as sometimes I think it is! Then I started to feel good, especially on the front nine, I started to hit some good drives and iron chances.”

He carded three birdies and two bogeys on the back nine of the Renaissance Club, reaching the turn in one under par. He then eagled the third and found two more birdies on the front nine despite tricky conditions.

After his US Open heartbreak, McIlroy took a break from golf to “process everything and build himself up” for his title defense in Scotland and The Open. He spent a few days in Manhattan reflecting on his performance.

“I’ve always liked to figure out things myself. I’m not one to reach out for advice because then, for me, I always want to own my success and disappointments. I think being able to figure it out yourself and giving yourself that time is a good thing,” McIlroy added.

Overall, McIlroy’s performance at the Scottish Open has set a positive tone as he prepares for The Open.

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