Rory McIlroy misses cut at Players Championship

Rory McIlroy had another disappointing day at Sawgrass
Rory McIlroy had another disappointing day at Sawgrass

Rory McIlroy admitted he had again struggled to master the Sawgrass course as he failed to make the cut at the Players Championship.

McIlroy was resigned to a halfway exit for third successive time in the event after a 76 left him four over.

The other Northern Ireland player in the field, Graeme McDowell, ended on one over and just outside the cut-off mark of level par.

"There is something about this course I can't get to grips with," said McIlroy.

"It is disappointing - I am not going to lie.

"I have been playing well for the last 12 months. This is my first missed cut for a year.

"I will get ready now for the big tournaments coming up."

The 23-year-old, who two years ago revealed his dislike of the Pete Dye-designed lay-out, started his round with a 17-foot birdie putt.

But that was as good as things got. He bogeyed the short 13th, had to settle for par on the 16th after also going in the water and then dropped further strokes at the 18th, first and fourth.

His early exit could give Luke Donald and Lee Westwood the chance to reclaim take over the number one spot in the world rankings.

Padraig Harrington also missed the cut after a disappointing second round of 76 left hin one one over, the same score as McDowell, who posted a 71.