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Rory McIlroy confirms he will make Irish Open return at K Club in 2023


Rory McIlroy will make his Irish Open return in 2023

Rory McIlroy will make his Irish Open return in 2023

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Rory McIlroy will make his Irish Open return in 2023

Rory McIlroy has confirmed he will return to the Horizon Irish Open in 2023 at The K Club after missing this year’s event at Mount Juliet.

The World No.2 opted not to play at the Co Kilkenny venue last week, instead taking a week off prior to playing the Scottish Open this week and then The Open Championship at St Andrews next week.

But McIlroy has confirmed that he will be playing in his home Open next year at The K Club, where he won the event in 2016, which will be a significant boost to tournament organisers.

"I’ll play the Irish Open next year,” McIlroy said at the JP McManus Pro-Am at Adare Manor. "This year it was just going to be hard for me because I had already committed to four in a row in the States and then knowing that I was playing in this event.

"My attitude towards it is, okay I’m not playing the Irish Open but I’m still going be playing in Ireland around the same time and I’m going to try and go out there and play in front of the Irish fans. So they are still getting an opportunity to come out and watch me and all the others play.

"So that was my attitude this year. But next year I’m not going to do that four in a row stretch in June. So I will have a week off after the U.S. Open most likely and then I’ll come back and play at The K Club. That’s the plan.”

Rather than play in this year’s event, the 33-year-old made the decision to compete at the Travelers Championship in Connecticut two weeks ago, the week after the US Open, before taking the Irish Open week off.

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This year’s tournament, played for the second year in a row at Mount Juliet, was won by Poland’s Adrian Meronk and was sold out on both Saturday and Sunday but featured a fairly weak field by world ranking in comparison to previous years.

After finishing ninth at the Irish Open, former Open champion Shane Lowry had said that tournament organisers should do all they could to convince the four-time Major winner to play in the event, even if they had to consider a date change.

“It’s all up to (Rory). We’d love to have him here. He’s such a big name in the world of golf,” said the Offaly man on Sunday.

"Is is that this date doesn’t suit him? If we moved it to a different date to suit him would that be better? Probably. It’d be nice to have him here. He’s one of the best golfers in the world.

“The week after the Open is a very good date, and the week after Wentworth too. We’re finished the FedEx Cup, we could get home for a couple of weeks.

"One of my favourite weeks of the year is Hilton Head, that’s the week after the Masters. I go away have a bit of a holiday with my family and play a bit of golf. I feel like a few people might do that if the Irish Open is the week after the Open. Relax and unwind after the last Major of the year.

"Stuff like that, you can think about when you’re looking for a date for a tournament. It doesn’t have to be before a tournament to get a player ready. It can be turned into something else.”

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