Rory Mcllroy had another horror end of round experience on day 1 at The Players Championship, dropping four shots on the last two holes to card a two-over par 74.

The golf phenom endured a similar fate on day two of the Masters in April, dropping five shots in the last three holes of the Augusta Natoinal course.

Mcllroy, who just turned 20 on Monday, was motoring along nicely until he stood up to the 17th tee.  Birdies at 2,9,12 and 16 were offset by bogeys at  7 and 13, but the Hollywood, County Down native was two-under going into what is described as the hardest hole in golf.

The 17th at Sawgrass is a short 130-yard par 3 completely surrounded by water. Mcllroy triple bogeyed the hole, and then bogeyed the last to end up with a 74.

Graeme McDowell shot a one under 71, going out in 36 (level) and coming in 35. The Portrush man had three birdies and two bogeys going around the course, ending his round nicely with a birdie on the last to get into red figures.

Padraig Harrington shot a level par round of 72.

Ben Crane is the leader in the clubhouse after shooting a seven-under-par 65.