Ian Poulter
Poulter will be hoping for a quicker start this week than at Muirfield last month. (Reuters)

Ian Poulter is looking to get off to a better start at the USPGA Championship this week and eradicate the "silly mistakes" that have derailed his previous attempts to win a first major.

The 37-year-old enjoyed a sublime final round at Muirfield at the Open last month, piecing together a spectacular sequence where he lifted himself from six over par at the start of the morning to even within just eight holes, drawing comparisons to his scintillating Ryder Cup showing the previous year.

But his exploits were only good enough to see him finish four behind eventual winner Phil Mickelson as he was unable to put himself among the chasing pack in the opening three rounds.

At last year's USPGA at Kiawah Island he found himself in a similar scenario, arriving at the final round six shots off eventual winner Rory McIlroy. Poulter then birdied the first five holes to throw his hat back in the ring but it wasn't enough to catch runaway leader from Northern Ireland.

"I guess I just haven't been close enough come Sunday," Poulter said ahead of the opening day at Oak Hill.

"I've had three good runs at it now, and every time I've just been a couple of shots away. So I have to look into the early part of each of those weeks and say I've made mistakes at the wrong time."

"It's silly mistakes that have been very costly over the years. Certainly the Open, bogeying four of the last five and bogeying two of the last three in those first three days was very, very costly.

"So it is about me staying focused for 18 holes and trying not to make those silly mistakes and trying to find myself in a better position come Sunday morning.

"My stats have probably proven that when my nose is in front, I've played very well and often I've been able to finish the job off.

"I'd like to find myself in that position a bit more often on a Saturday night, because it will stop these grey hairs coming through."