"It was not too disappointing". World number one Jason Day was relatively upbeat about his U.S. Open showing after recovering from a woeful opening round to finish in the top 10.
After posting a forgettable first-round 76, Day rallied to finish two over the card in a tie for eighth at Oakmont Country Club on Sunday.
Day had a mountain to climb following day one of the major tournament but he refused to give up, threatening to challenge eventual champion Dustin Johnson atop the leaderboard with an eagle and birdie on the back nine before settling for a one-over-par 71 after double-bogeying and bogeying his remaining two holes.
Winner of last year's US PGA Championship, Australian Day was happy with how he played after round one.
"It wasn't too disappointing, really," Day said.
"Obviously, 14 -- I eagled 12, birdied 13. 14, I just kind of left it out there to the right, made a good two-putt. 15, if it went five more yards would have landed on the front and kicked up. That would have been maybe -- it would have given me a good shot at birdie. Same with 16, if it went five more yards, would have kind of caught the top and rolled towards the flag. I hit a great shot there."
"I had the opportunity to go out there and give myself the shot at winning the tournament. Tried to hit a good shot there. Hit a great drive. Unfortunately, didn't work out.
"But it is what it is. I've got to understand that these things happen for a reason. I just said earlier that I've just got to understand that and not be too disappointed, because where I was hitting after my first round, shooting six over par, to where I am now, trying to fight my way back in and giving myself an opportunity at winning, especially on a U.S. Open course, it takes a lot of grit and a lot of oomph to get there.
"Fortunately, but unfortunately, I didn't quite make it."
"I played some good golf out there the last three rounds, and very happy with how I played. Not so happy with the finish. Obviously, I'm here to win a tournament and, unfortunately, I didn't win," he continued.
"But all good stuff to learn from and just try and get better for the next time.
"I mean, I keep having a lot of top 10s in U.S. Opens. So one of these years -- I mean, I've had two second place finishes already. Now a fourth and a ninth and an eighth now. I've just got to keep doing what I'm doing because obviously I'm putting myself in contention to give myself a shot at winning.
"So one of these years, it's going to fall my way. But, you know, until then I've got to keep working hard and keep being focused on the process and trying to get better each and every week."