Padraig Harrington has cooled talk that he can become the third man in history to complete three Major victories in a row.

Speaking ahead of the Arnold Palmer Invitational he explained that he has been taking it easy this year to avoid burn-out come the end of the season.

On his chances at the US Masters, starting April 9, he said: “Ideally, if I were to be absolutely competitive and sharp, I’d probably have played 15 events by this stage. I’ll have played seven or eight events going into the Masters, which I hope is enough.

“I’m hoping to be ready for the Masters, but I’m also hoping not to burn myself out by the end of the PGA.”

Harrington was beaten by Pat Perez in the first round of the WGC Accenture Match Play last month and finished joint 20th in the WGC-CA Championship, won by Phil Mickelson.

“Doral the week before was exactly what I needed in terms of going out on the golf course and seeing where my game was at and working on a few things on the course,” added the Irishman.

“I still have a few issues – I definitely drove the ball poorly in Doral – but last week was a very positive week going forward.”

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