Rory McIlroy has suggested that he has learned lessons from heading into the Masters with what he has hinted was the wrong mentality.
The Northern Irishman, a four-time major winner, was bidding to end a nine-year wait to complete the Grand Slam, the Masters remaining as the only competition of the big four that he has failed to win.
Boosted by his performances and third place at WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, McIlroy travelled to Augusta early and put in a number of practice rounds.
However, the 34-year-old could only produce scores of 72 and 77, resulting in him missing the cut by two shots and choosing not to give post-exit interviews to the media.
In his only appearance since the Masters, McIlroy could only muster a tied-47th at the Wells Fargo Championship, a tournament that is known to be one of his favourite on the PGA Tour courtesy of his three victories at Quail Hollow.
While that was another performance which has led to the world number three evaluating his last six weeks, McIlroy insists that he can only benefit from his recent experiences at this week US PGA Championship.
🚨 "It's the mental aspect of it and the deflation of it... I still believe that I'm one of the best golfers in the world."— Sky Sports Golf (@SkySportsGolf) May 16, 2023
Rory McIlroy on getting over the disappointment of Augusta ⬇ pic.twitter.com/4EazYT1iae
Speaking to BBC Sport, McIlroy said: "I was never so sure I was going to have a great week at Augusta and then that happened. The night before, I felt so good, but the game can bring you back down to earth pretty quickly.
"It was a great lesson to me to not put too much into feelings or vibes. I shot five under on the back nine on Wednesday afternoon [in practice] and everything was in a good spot, but that's golf.
"The best way is to not let yourself get to that level of expectation. I need to have a little more acceptance.
"When I think back to Augusta and the past few months, my level of acceptance wasn't where it needs to be. If I work on that, I know I'll play some good golf again."
McIlroy heads into the tournament at Oak Hill having lost considerable ground on Jon Rahm and Scottie Scheffler in the World Golf Rankings, instead facing pressure to stay in third from Patrick Cantlay.