Rory McIlroy has stirred excitement among Irish golf fans by suggesting The Open Championship could be heading outside the United Kingdom for the first time
A celebration of Irish golf is taking place on the DP World Tour this week.
McIlroy hasn’t just stoked excitement with his golf, but with some comments he made after the first round on the prospect of The Open heading to the Republic of Ireland.
Portmarnock in County Dublin is the course in question, a golf club that allowed women members for the first time in its history in 2021.
“Having a course that’s so close to a major city, so close to a major airport, having a great golf course, I think it would be amazing,” he said. “I think they are seriously looking at it.
“I was looking forward to Portrush but (concerned) in terms of how it would do commercially – there are so many other considerations to hosting a major championship apart from it being a great golf course.”
The County Dublin course recently became eligible to host R&A events after voting to allow nine women to join in December of last year.
Portmarnock has previously hosted the Walker Cup and the Amateur Championship. The club established in 1894 will also host the Women’s Amateur in 2024.
Infrastructure and golf course access could be the stumbling blocks Portmarnock would need to overcome to host The Open, which will head to Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland in 2025.
The tournament made a sensational return to County Antrim in 2019 after a 68-year absence.
The R&A declined to comment on the prospect of Portmarnock hosting The Open Championship.
R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers ruled out the possibility of Portmarnock holding The Open last year, while at this year’s championship, he also ruled out Royal Porthcawl in Wales.
The Open Championship future venues
2024: Royal Troon Golf Club, Troon, Scotland
2025: Royal Portrush Golf Club, Portrush, Northern Ireland
2026: Royal Birkdale Golf Club, Southport, England
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