McIlroy rues missed birdie chances

Four-time major champion Rory McIlroy felt he could have been sitting in a prettier position at the Masters following his second round.

Rory McIlroy at the Masters   -  Getty Images

Rory McIlroy was disappointed not to convert more birdie chances after shooting a second-round 71 at the Masters on Friday.

The Northern Irishman signed for a score that left him four under for the tournament, the joint-best score in the clubhouse alongside Jordan Spieth. However, Patrick Reed had made it to eight under through nine holes of his second round.

McIlroy was one over for his round at the turn, but found himself back in the red thanks to back-to-back gains at the 13th and 14th holes.

The four-time major champion – who opened with a three-under 69 on Thursday – had opportunities on the closing holes to improve his score, but was unable to nail his efforts with the flat stick.

"I was one over for the front nine, so to shoot two under on the back, I would have taken that on the 10th tee," he said. 

"But the way I played on the way in, I felt like I hit some good golf shots and gave myself putts for birdies. 

"I feel like I left a couple out there on 17 and 18, I hit two good putts that didn't go in and missed on the top side, so I feel like I could have had something in the 60s, but I'm pretty pleased with how I played."

Scoring was proving tricky for the early starters, with McIlroy conceding the Augusta winds were tough to gauge.

"It's just so tricky, the wind should be south or south-west today but every single hole you're on it's coming from a different direction," he added.

"We're really having to be aware of what it's doing. With the wind here I just wait to see where I think the wind should be and try to hit my shot.

"You just have to trust where it is, it swirls in these big high trees."