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Rory McIlroy to 'take a few weeks away' from golf after US Open collapse which he describes as his 'toughest day as a professional'

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Rory McIlroy has withdrawn from the PGA Tour's Travelers Championship and said he will 'take a few weeks away' after describing his final-round heartbreak at the US Open as 'toughest day as a professional golfer'.

McIlroy bogeyed three of his final four holes at Pinehurst No 2 on Sunday as he finished second at a major for the fourth time since winning the PGA Championship in 2014.

Having led by two shots at one point, McIlroy missed two par putts from inside four feet over the closing stretch as Bryson DeChambeau ultimately claimed the title by one stroke.

McIlroy declined media interviews after his final-round 69 and left the course before DeChambeau had lifted the trophy, with the Northern Irishman posting on social media a day later to reflect on how he plans to move forward from his runner-up finish.

He posted on X on Monday evening: "Yesterday was a tough day, probably the toughest I've had in my nearly 17 years as a professional golfer.

"Firstly, I'd like to congratulate Bryson. He is a worthy champion and exactly what professional golf needs right now. I think we can all agree on that.

"As I reflect on my week, I'll rue a few things over the course of the tournament, mostly the two missed putts on 16 and 18 on the final day. But, as I always try to do, I'll look at the positives of the week that far outweigh the negatives.

"As I said at the start of the tournament, I feel closer to winning my next major championship than I ever have. The one word that I would describe my career as is resilient. I've shown my resilience over and over again in the last 17 years and I will again.

"I'm going to take a few weeks away from the game to process everything and build myself back up for my defence of the Genesis Scottish Open and The Open at Royal Troon. See you in Scotland."

McIlroy had been due to make an immediate return to PGA Tour action at the Travelers Championship, the final Signature Event of the season and with a $20million prize purse, although his withdrawal was confirmed on Monday.

Shane Lowry, who finished 19th at the US Open, added: "From the outside looking in… this game is easy. But in reality it's the worst game of all. We are very fortunate to get what we do from this game but over the last 24 hours it's hit me.

"We do it for not only ourselves but for our family, friends and fans. What Rory has gone through is as tough as it gets in our game but I would like to encourage people if anything please be kind."

Mcllroy now has 21 top-10s in majors since his 2014 victory at Valhalla, more than any other player in that period, with his latest runner-up finish his sixth consecutive top-10 at a US Open without victory.

The 35-year-old will return to action at the Genesis Scottish Open at the Renaissance Club, a Rolex Series event on the DP World Tour, where he is defending champion after last year's dramatic one-shot victory over Robert MacIntyre.

The Scottish Open starts on Thursday July 11, live on Sky Sports, with The 152nd Open, also live on Sky Sports, taking place between Thursday July 18 and Sunday July 21.

Former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, speaking on Golf Channel about McIlroy's latest close finish in a major, said: "He's had chances to win three majors in the last two years since St Andrews going up against Cameron Smith.

"He hasn't lost them because his swing deserted him at the wrong time, he lost them because his putting went slow and when he had opportunities he didn't seize the initiative.

"You see him [win on the PGA Tour] at Quail Hollow, he gets the opportunity, he seizes it and he runs off into the distance. He knows how to do it. The difference in major championships is, when the initiative is presented to him, he doesn't run off.

"On the back of the 13th, where he made birdie to go two shots ahead, he played 14 really poorly, he played 15 really poorly, 16, 17 and 18 really poorly.

"Mentally, he got on the precipice of winning this tournament and instead of driving over the line, he hesitated. And if you hesitate with guys like Bryson around you, you've got a problem."

Watch Rory McIlroy in PGA Tour and DP World Tour action live this season on Sky Sports. The 152nd Open at Royal Troon is live from July 18-21 on Sky Sports Golf. Stream the PGA Tour, majors and more with NOW.