Shell Houston Open: Rory McIlroy shoots over par in opening round at Redstone
Rory McIlroy's bid for a fast start in the Shell Houston Open ended in disappointment after an opening one-over 73.
Last Updated: 29/03/13 4:41pm
The Northern Irishman, who lost his world No 1 ranking to Tiger Woods last week, is playing his final event before The Masters and hoping to bank some confidence for the year's opening major after a poor beginning to the season.
But he will have gained none as he finished the first round down in 88th spot, nine shots behind leader DA Points and in danger of missing the cut.
Playing in the afternoon wave, he was slow out of the blocks and reached the turn in three over 39 after a bogey at two and a double bogey seven at the eighth.
Three birdies in four holes from the 10th got him back to level par but a bogey at 17 left the two-time major winner over par for the day.
Asked what he took out of the round, McIlroy hesitated before responding: "I'm not so sure.
"I felt like I hit the ball okay. I think if I just eliminate the stupid mistakes - I made double on the par five on the front nine and made a couple of silly bogeys.
"If I can just not do that and keep playing the way I'm playing, I feel like I'm playing okay."
McIlroy said earlier this week that he was hitting the ball really well in practice but admitted that he was having trouble bringing that to the course.
"I think I'm still a little bit tentative out there on the golf course and not committing to my shots fully," he said.
"But I think that just takes time and takes rounds. Hopefully another three rounds this week and some good scores will give me confidence going into The Masters."