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New Ladies Irish Open bound for Belfast next year

By Paul Kelly

Plans are at an advanced stage to resurrect the Ladies Irish Open and bring it to Belfast, possibly as early as next year.

Belfast-born Hugh Morrow, chief executive of Canadian sports marketing firm Sports Properties International, has revealed an ambitious strategy to relaunch the dormant Ladies European Tour (LET) event.

"I have always had this sense that bringing an event to Northern Ireland would be very special to me personally," said the 68-year-old who was schooled at Sullivan Lower before emigrating with his family to Canada in 1957.

"The Ladies Irish Open hasn't been played since 2012. The idea of bringing it back really jumped out."

Morrow is determined this new Ladies Irish Open will "plant a flag and be there for a minimum of five years".

He continued: "Over the last eight to 10 months I have been visiting golf courses, meeting politicians, talking to Tourism NI, Invest NI, Tourism Ireland and Belfast City Council to really establish a platform.

"We are getting very close. We hope to stage the event in July next year."

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