Ory McIlroy said he was confident he would soon end his nearly decade-long run without a major title after finishing third at the 150th Open.
Cameron Smith won the Claret Jug after a record 20-under par score was sealed with a stunning finish on Sunday, having started the day four strokes behind the Northern Irishman.
With his last of four major titles to come in 2014, the drought will have reached its ninth year when McIlroy, 33, has the chance to win another at next April’s Masters – although he has generally performed well in all four tournaments this year.
“I’m going to regret a few missed putts that slipped, but it’s been a good week overall,” he said.
“I can’t be too discouraged because of how this year has gone and this year.
“I’m playing one of the best golf courses I’ve played in a long time. So it’s just a matter of keeping knocking on the door, and eventually we’ll open up.
“In the end, it’s not life or death. I will have other chances to win the Open Championship and other chances to win Majors. He’s the one I feel like I let slip, but there will be other opportunities.”
Smith, 28, was left speechless by his stunning run to the Open crown which broke Tiger Woods’ record around the Old Course to lift his first major crown.
“I think winning an open championship in itself will probably be the highlight of a golfer’s career,” the Australian said.
“Doing it around St Andrews I think is just amazing. This place is so cool. I love the golf course. I love the town. To have the 150th Open here and come away with the win is just something that I dreamed of.
“It’s unreal to look at these names on this trophy and add my own, I’m at a loss for words. I’m definitely going to find out how many beers fit in this thing for sure.