Motivation tough after Open win - Darren Clarke

Darren Clarke poses with the Claret jug
Clarke's Open triumph came in his 20th appearance in the tournament

Open winner Darren Clarke has admitted he is finding it hard to motivate himself following his victory at Royal St George's in July.

The 43-year-old, whose Open win was his maiden major title, is playing in this week's Dunhill Links Championship.

"I've done what I've always wanted - got to the top of the mountain," said Clarke. "What else can compare to it?

"Ask anybody who's achieved their lifetime goal, they'll probably tell you 'how do you keep going and going?'"

The Northern Irishman added: "What else is there to do? I've managed to win the tournament I've wanted to win from when I first started playing golf, the biggest and best tournament in the world.

"My difficulty since has been assessing and fixing some goals.

"What else is there to do? Yes, they (major championships) are all very important, but to me The Open is the oldest, the biggest, the best there is.

"I've no idea how people like [Olympic five-times gold medallist rower] Steve Redgrave do it, keep going for more."

which saw him hold off the challenge of American duo Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson to become the first UK winner since Paul Lawrie in 1999, came in his 20th appearance in the famous tournament.

Since winning the Open, Clarke has played in four events, with his best performance coming at the in Switzerland when he finished five under to tie for 35th. He has twice failed to make the cut, at the and the

However, with a large haul of points available on offer this weekend in the event played with an amateur partner over three courses - St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns - Clarke sees this as an opportunity to achieve another of his goals: to play in a sixth Ryder Cup.

"We're playing for an awful lot of prize money this week, Ryder Cup points and world ranking points," he said. "I would dearly love to make the [Ryder Cup] team next year and I want to give myself every chance I can to do that."