World No.1 Rory McIlroy will return to Sydney to defend his Australian Open golf crown this summer.
Fresh from victories at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational in Ohio and The Open Championship at Hoylake, McIlroy has confirmed he will be at The Australian Golf Club from November 27-30 for the $1.25 million event.
The 25-year-old three-time major champion from Northern Ireland edged out Australia’s world No.2 Adam Scott in a thrilling conclusion to last year’s event at Royal Sydney.
“I’m really looking forward to coming back to Sydney in November to defend my Emirates Australian Open title,” McIlroy said.
“I had a terrific experience last year in front of great crowds. They really loved the showdown between myself and Adam. And it proved to be a really important win for me.
“I believe my return to form was given real momentum in Australia last year. I’ve heard great things about The Australian Golf Club since the Jack Nicklaus redesign and I look forward to competing in front of the Aussie fans again later in the year.”
McIlroy won the 2012 US PGA Championship at Kiawah Island and the 2011 US Open at Congressional among seven PGA Tour victories to date.
With his win in Liverpool, he joined the record books with Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the only three players to have won three major championships by the age of 25.
“Following his recent success, McIlroy is in career-best form and this will be the only opportunity for sporting fans in Australia to see him in action against some of the world’s best golfers,” NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Tourism and Major Events Andrew Stoner said on Wednesday.
Golf Australia boss Stephen Pitt said the Australian Open was fast shaping as an unmissable event with McIlroy’s confirmation.
“We are thrilled that Rory is able to return to Sydney in November. His commanding wins at the Open Championship and the Bridgestone Invitational were another demonstration of his extraordinary talent which has made him the household name that he is,” Pitt said.
“As the defending champion and based on the volume of responses we had from the fans, sponsors and TV viewers, we were obviously very keen to have Rory come back to Australia.
“We’re excited about the potential of Rory rekindling the final round battle from 2013 and the stage is set for a huge week at The Australian Golf Club.”