Rory McIlroy will go back to the drawing board after another flop at a major tournament – but first he’s going to root for good pal Graeme McDowell.

The former US Open champion completed his British Open effort with a disappointing 73 early on Sunday morning to finish on eight over par for the tournament.

Before he flies home to Belfast, McIlroy will support McDowell in his bid to catch Aussie Adam Scott at the top of the leaderboard.

“I’ll be shouting for Graeme this afternoon,” said McIlroy as he admitted to his own shortcomings at Lytham.

“My game hasn’t been there. It was pretty good on the first day but after that I struggled and couldn’t find anything. Overall, it’s been a disappointing week for me.

“When you try to force it and press things, it just doesn’t work. It is hard to make up shots on this golf course.

“I will be watching Graeme McDowell this afternoon and it will be a battle for the guys out there.

“Adam Scott has to go out and protect the lead and if Graeme can plod along and pick a shot here and there, he may be able to do something. I hope so.”

McIlroy knows the root of his current problems as he turns his attentions to the US PGA at Kiawah Island next month.

He added: “Just consistency, lack of consistency with my swing and from there it’s tough.

“Whenever you’re not confident in the shots that you’re trying to hit, then it is tough to sort of trust your swing.

“I’m frustrated but that’s the way it is. That’s golf and you just have to get on with it and keep trying and keep practising and stay patient until it turns around.”

Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowellGoogle Images