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Shane Lowry Thinks His US Open Finish Had A Huge Impact On His Ryder Cup Dreams

Shane Lowry Thinks His US Open Finish Had A Huge Impact On His Ryder Cup Dreams
By Conor O'Leary
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If you had said back in June that Shane Lowry wouldn't be in Europe's Ryder Cup team four months hence most people would think you'd be crazy. The Clara native was in the form of his life, having lead going into the final round of the US Open, and playing some great golf.

But, as we know, that's when it all went wrong for the Offaly golfer. Missed putts, costly mistakes, and Lowry slowly began to drift out of contention.

He was playing so badly that he wasn't really in contention for one of the wildcard spots.

Understandably, this is one of the worst moments of his career. Typical of Lowry, he's blunt about it. He is talking openly about what's happened in his Irish Times column today. From the phone call he got from captain Darren Clarke "He told me he’d wanted me in the team all year, that I didn’t perform when I needed to.", to his own thoughts and anguish.

Even though Lowry knew he wasn't playing well enough, and proclaiming in the media that he wasn't going to get it - he still hadn't given up hope:

Until you get such a phone call, there’s always a glimmer of hope in your head. There was in mine anyway.

That's how much he wanted to play for Europe. He's never played in the Ryder Cup before, and his rookie status counted against him in the wildcard standings - but Lowry has the game, the experience, and the temperament to play well in America. That's why he thought he still had a chance. It's why he still had hope.

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It's that hope that makes it harder to take. He really wanted it. Perhaps he wanted it too much:

The Ryder Cup has been on my mind a lot. It’s been like a cloud hanging over me and I just never got momentum.

Lowry thinks that the US Open finish - where he finished tied second cost him the rest of his season:

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I couldn’t get rid of the feeling that not much has gone my way since finishing runner-up in the US Open at Oakmont. If there’s been a bad break going, it would find me.

I lost confidence quickly after the US Open which shouldn’t have happened. You start counting down the tournaments to try and make the team. I probably put too much emphasis on it and it is something I will have to learn from the next time.

Does the 29-year-old have any regrets. Kind of. Not really, but yes. He thinks he didn't get his schedule right this season. He thinks he played too many times, on too many new courses.

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But most of all, he changed his schedule in a last ditch attempt to force Clarke's hand by playing in Denmark last week - the tournament won by Thomas Pieters that clinched his spot. In doing so, Lowry forfeited his place at the Barclays - the first tournament in the lucrative FedEx Cup series.

Lowry started the weekend at 87th place - with the top 100 qualifying for the next round in the series - this week's Deutsche Bank Championship in Boston. By not playing at the Barclays - Lowry dropped 15 places to 102nd, and won't feature at all in the FedEx Cup, that has a total prize fund of $35,000,000.

What’s very disappointing as well is that the FedEx Cup goes on without me playing any part in it. I made the decision to play in Denmark hoping to make a final push for a Ryder Cup spot but I honestly thought I’d be in the field for the Deutsche Bank championship in Boston. I was 87th in the standings going into the Barclays – which I missed in favour of Denmark – and didn’t think I’d drop down 15 places.

Do I regret going to Denmark? If I didn’t go, I’d always be thinking ‘what if?’ I regret going now, though, because I am not in Boston and I have missed out on the chance to play the FedEx Cup.

It means now that Lowry will finally take some time off golf that he needs. He's not scheduled to play at all for the next five weeks. We might see a refreshed and recharged Lowry at the Dunhill Links in October.

Lowry vows that he will be in the next Ryder Cup in Paris in 2018. Given that he's 29 and just coming into some of the best years of his career - would you back against him? Then again - would you have done that in June? Come on Shane, we want to see you there.

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[Irish Times]

See Also: Bad News For The Irish As Darren Clarke Announces His Three Ryder Cup Wildcard Picks

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