Darren Clarke … another NI golf major win … coming along like buses

Darren Clarke is £900,000 richer as he finishes the 140th Open Championship five shots under par, and three ahead of his nearest rival. As many people have commented on Twitter:

To have 3 major winners in 14 months is incredible. Took English golfers 60 years.

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  • michael-mcivor

    Well done Darren Clarke- A tyrone man had to win today when Derry went out of the championship-

  • Nunoftheabove

    Full marks to Daz, a truly very ballsy last round indeedily doodily. Not just a game for kids alone mercifully enough and amazingly, I’m told it’s his first top ten major finish in ten years. Jayshush.

    Fine work – la di das well sparked in our house, not least as the each way dollars were on the right horse and we’re paddling in gravy.

    Up The Da’

  • lamhdearg

    Northern Ireland/Ulster, world superpower of golf, the lady said it, the Lady is right. i feel even better for Darren than i did for Rory, all that he’s has been through, plus the fact Rory even it he had not won the u.s. would have won soon, well done the big guy. Guinness to flow.

  • eddie poole

    A real tear-jerker of a speech. Well done to a real nice guy. Delighted for his sons as well.

  • dwatch

    Anyone know what odds the bookies were given last wednesday or thursday for Clarke, and who put a £10 on him instead of Mclroy to win?

  • nightrider

    He was 150/1 on Betfair.

    Rory was odds on to win Sports Personality of the year, he wont be anymore.

  • dodrade

    All the more impressive given his age and girth!

  • changeisneeded

    waste of a good walk

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    unbelievable. seems such a nice guy. to have 3 majors from NI in 13 months is just insane. Well done Dazza – played magnificiently throughout in some attrocious conditions.

  • dodrade

    Northern Ireland has three major winners, two of the best courses in the world, yet doesn’t even have a European Tour event, never mind host the Open. Surely this must now change.

  • Into the west

    terrific stuff — a trinity — all for the right reasons
    well done ulster ..you’re on the map noy

  • BryanS

    The trouble is we dont have the infrastructure to host the event…. at least that is the excuse. But we certainly have 30000 spectators to watch the event. have we the hotels to cope with the media and players. Of course we do. belfast is only 90 minutes away – less by helicopter. The R & A need to get their act together and stop denying us.

  • @dodrade

    The Irish Open is the NI Tour event, golf being a ’32 county’ sport.

  • lamhdearg

    Ulick
    nice try but Golf is an indiviDUAL sport, British open (The Open) to come in the next five years, irish open to come? seven irish opens played in n.i in 70 years none in last 50 years, but always welcome. well done Darren

  • JR

    Great to watch. Great for Darren, Ireland and Ulster.

  • @lamhdearg, your man was complaining about NI not having a Tour event, I’m simply pointing out that there is no such thing as ‘NI’ golf, only Irish golf. Therefore there is no logical reason for an NI event or at least no more reason than Tyrone or Antrim being given a Tour event.

  • dwatch

    “Northern Ireland has three major winners, two of the best courses in the world, yet doesn’t even have a European Tour event, never mind host the Open. Surely this must now change.”

    I doubt if it will change so long as sectarian riots continue to frighten golf supporters away from visiting Northern Ireland during the marching season when the UK golf open takes place.

  • lamhdearg

    ulick.
    “your man” or yer man, bryans point sounds ok to me, but he’s not my man. i am simply pointing out that golf is an indivDUAL sport, where players from n.i. can be irish british or both, it is not a team game in the main dwatch The Open will be played in N.I. within the next 4 to 6 years.

  • Mark

    Congrats and thanks to Darren Clarke for proving that life does indeed begin at 40 …

    Now he can ask Pfizer for sponsorship ……

  • Chris Donnelly

    Clarke’s victory is the stuff of fairytales. Of all the recent Irish golf successes, his is the most heart-warming.

    I’d love to see one of our courses hold the Open tournament in future years, but the proximity of the event’s date within the golfing calendar with our annual descent into inter-communal hostilities will probably mean that a lengthy period of peaceful marching seasons will have to pass before such a major sporting event is hosted in these parts.

    Personally, I’d love to see some type of significant investment aimed at capitalising on the recent Major triumphs- a golf academy maybe. Better still, imagine if the three winners could co-design a new golf course on the shores of Lough Neagh…

    In any case, Darren deserves his hour of triumph.

  • lamhdearg

    “a new golf course on the shores of Lough Neagh” would the old long kesh site be big enough, i think some are playing up the riots a bit here other than the poor people that live on the interfaces, the trouble causes little disturbance. however back to Darren, he had a bit of luck today, but as someone (a golfer i think) once said the better i play the more lucky i get. Lets try not to go off on to a irish/british rant on this thread.

  • lamhdearg

    The long kesh thing is a joke. plenty of links course’s in n.i. plus is rory not linked to one, lough erne?

  • dwatch

    “The Open will be played in N.I. within the next 4 to 6 years.”

    That may be hopeful but I doubt it. These three golf courses in England and Scotland have already been chosen for the next three opens. Nothing else has been decided officially to my knowledge.

    2012 – 19-22 July, Royal Lytham & St Annes

    2013 – 18-21 July, Muirfield

    2014 – 17-20 July, Royal Liverpool

  • Dewi

    Wonderful – and such a nice bloke!

  • PeterBrown

    Hats off to the man – his career story as recounted by me was fascinating enough to actually involve my wife in every shot he played this afternoon. As another Northern Ireland legend once said about a similar underdog triumph “It would bring a tear to a glass eye” – especially that interview and as the BBC themselves put it that “perfectly presented acceptance speech”.

  • HeinzGuderian

    You will be pleased to know I had £5 at 250/1 and £4.26 at 270/1 !! 😉

    There must be easier games than this golf betting lark ?? ahahahahaha 🙂

  • Somethings are just worth waiting for, even if you don’t realise it at the time. So that’ll be Darren Clarke and Hugh Orde both celebrating tonight then after both having landed the big one.

  • USA

    Well done Darren Clarke.

    On the coverage here in the US, as Clarke approached one of the greens (i’m not a golf fan), the commentator was talking about “decades of violence” in NI.
    People in Ulster my not like it, and some may not even realize it, but that is how they are percieved by many abroad.

    Yes, these victories put Ulster on the map as a golf destination. But I have to agree with those above who mentioned the recurring summer violence. With the OO marches, summer violence and lack of community relations it is very unlikely that the maximum benefits of these impressive sporting achievements can be realized. Just a short while ago Rory McIlroy was pushed off the front pages by UVF thugs, who some of the local politicians tried to find excuses for. .

    All this while a minority group of simple minded fools try to portray marching through streets for months on end as some sort of community festival. The summers in Ulster are destroyed by fringe extremists such as elements in the Orange Order grouping. This minority holds the rest of society to ransome. Heck, even the people who live there leave for the “twelfth fortnight”. So why would sane folks invest time and money when there are lots of other welcoming places to visit.

    Have to run, I’ve just woke up and I think I smell the coffee!!!!!

  • Mark

    And if Hugh Orde does get the job , you can be sure Heinz will be on here claiming he had a tenner at 500/1 on him getting the job.

  • Mark

    Just kidding Heinz ….

  • I love that Northern Ireland has a talent for swinging pieces of metal at small objects.

  • Republic of Connaught

    Fantastic win for Darren Clarke. He always appears as the most decent and honest fella of all the golfers. A typical Tyrone man. No one will forget his bravery at the K club so am delighted for the man.

    So it’s 3 majors to the north of Ireland and 3 to the South of Ireland in the last 5 years. It appears the Golfing Union of Ireland should be charitable and send over some coaches to their English counterparts. 🙂

  • dwatch

    I see the UK nationals are all slagging off McIlroy (world no 4) for his poor preformance, but not a single word about England’s glory boys world No 1 & 2 Westwood and Donald. who didn’t even make the cut. At such an impressionable age, with having to take such cynical reporting on the chin
    ( a speciality of UK newspaper reporters) I can see Rory McIlroy packing UK & Europe in and going to join Graham McDowell on the American circuit & live in the US were he knows will be better appreciated.

    “McIlroy: I hate the weather and I can’t wait to get back to America’s sunshine”
    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/golf/article-2015815/BRITISH-OPEN-2011-Rory-McIlroy-wait-to-America.html#ixzz1SQxfwdDi

    “Despite all the hype McIlroy’s hopes are gone with the wind”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/golf/despite-all-the-hype-mcilroys-hopes-are-gone-with-the-wind-2315457.html

    “The Open 2011: Prospects gloomy for Rory McIlroy as he bemoans Sandwich weather”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/golf/8643884/The-Open-2011-Prospects-gloomy-for-Rory-McIlroy-as-he-bemoans-Sandwich-weather.html

  • john

    The open isnt coming to Northern Ireland full stop. We cant even blame the politics here or lack of hotels for visitors. The only 2 courses that have the potential to host the open Co. Down and Portrush can only facilitate max 80000 spectators over the 4 days compare that to the 150000-200000 at the existing courses and you can see why its a no brainer for the R&A. Our best bet is to get the Irish open soon – which Im sure will happen in the next few years but the Open itself is a pipe dream

  • dwatch

    “The open isnt coming to Northern Ireland full stop.”

    John, you may be right, but time will tell if these R & A chiefs are not just blowing hot air, to keep the present punters & supporters of Darren, Rory & Graham happy.
    “R&A chief promises to ‘look at’ Portrush for Open Championship”
    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/sport/golf/rampa-chief-promises-to-look-at-portrush-for-open-championship-16024513.html#ixzz1SROX6tSA

  • Republic of Connaught

    Dwatch,

    The London papers will claim Rory when he wins but throw him aside if he’s no good. He’ll be British if he wins and Irish if he becomes a choker.

    Indeed, if young Rory had to directly compete against a young English prodigy of the same talent for any major then you’d soon see where the ‘British press’ would be placing their hopes.

    And it wouldn’t be the lad from this island.

  • Mike the First

    Excellent stuff – well done to Darren on a well deserved victory.

    With three major wins in 13 months, by three different golfer, Northern Ireland is (as Rory put it) golfing capital of the world!

  • Mike the First

    Ulick

    “your man was complaining about NI not having a Tour event, I’m simply pointing out that there is no such thing as ‘NI’ golf, only Irish golf. Therefore there is no logical reason for an NI event or at least no more reason than Tyrone or Antrim being given a Tour event.”

    What national appellation goes beside the names of golfers from NI when they play on the Tour?

    It’s…Northern Ireland.

  • vanhelsing

    Brilliant to see another Ulsterman win, great for Darren and super for Northern Ireland golf tourism. John maybe right about the Open though – we’re just not geared up for that amount of ‘focused’ golf tourism.

    I know that Arlene is looking at options. Although Royal Portrush is limited in terms of infrastructure it’s just an hour up the motorway from Belfast and there are lots of Hotels within 30 mins striking distance.

    I don’t think that R&A can keep ignoring it if our boys keep winning majors. We have two courses that are suitable – we just need to be a little creative with the accomodation:)

  • ayeYerMa

    Republic of Connaught, just like the southerners will be trying to claim our NI golfers when they win (strangely by waving their foreign flag) and disowning when they lose.

  • dwatch

    “The London papers will claim Rory when he wins but throw him aside if he’s no good. He’ll be British if he wins and Irish if he becomes a choker.”

    Republic of Connaught, Rory will always be from Northern Ireland win or lose, thats why the Northern Ireland flag flew
    during the 2011 open to represent Darren, Rory & Graham.

  • JR

    Hs’s Irish! No Hes British!! No hes An Ulster man (6 Counties) No He is An Ulsterman (9 Counties). He’s not yours he’s ours. Stop trying to claim our champinon!!! If he belongs to us he can’t belong to you!

  • Mark

    ayeYerMa ,

    I think you’ll find it’s your british media who are famous for disowning their sportsmen/women when the going gets tough .

  • JR

    You should start to debate whether to eat your boiled egg big end first or small end first. It is about equal in merit and to this Irish/northern Irish/British thing.

  • Republic of Connaught

    Ayeyerma,

    That’s complete shvt. McIlroy and co. will have the full support of Irish golf fans for as long as he plays wherever he plays, win or lose. I’m from Connaught and was as happy to see an Ulsterman like Darren Clarke win as a Leinsterman like Padraig Harrington. I have a lot more fondness for culchies from Tyrone or elsewhere than Dubliners.

    The idea that only Ulster people on the small island of Ireland would be proud of Clarke is as ludicrous as the idea that only Leinster people would have been proud of Harrington when he won.

  • Drumlins Rock

    Congratulations to fellow Dungannon man Darren Clarke (my da used to work with his da you know ) for the first time even I actually followed a golf tournament, don’t think I will take it up just yet, but it was great to see.

    Three Masters from three players in just over a year in one of the worlds most popular sports is something to be proud off for Northern Ireland. All official records I can see list them as “Northern Ireland” by the way, which seems to be the practice in golf, dosn’t mean they aren’t Irish, British and European as well, most importantly Clarke is a Dungannon man!

    As for “the British media disowning their own”, that particular media stable is not the most reliable institution these days, why pay it much attention! Right better find a party to go too!

  • BryanS

    Well said Connaught. We all supported Leinster in the Heiniken Cup final and would have supported Munster or heaven forbid! Connaught

  • Republic of Connaught

    BryanS,

    When I finally match Roman Abramovich’s wealth I will make sure Connaught rugby and Galway Utd FC are financed sufficiently to give the people of the west the glory we richly deserve.

    Until then we’ll allow the three lesser provinces to have their time in the sun. 🙂

  • carl marks

    changeisneeded (profile) says:
    17 July 2011 at 7:31 pm

    waste of a good walk
    have to agree with that but having said that good one Darren we need alll the good news we can get, and best of luck in future games

  • ayeYerMa

    Republic of Connaught, view my comment in context to your own moaning about the British. Southerners like yourself have no ground to stand on to moan and should keep out of it in the future.

  • dwatch

    “Republic of Connaught, just like the southerners will be trying to claim our NI golfers when they win (strangely by waving their foreign flag) and disowning when they lose.”

    Good point ayeYerMa. I couldn’t have replied better.

  • Republic of Connaught

    Ayeyerma,

    Darren Clarke and Rory will enjoy their rousing welcome from their fellow Irishmen in Killarney so who really cares what backward provincialists like you and your ilk think.

  • ayeYerMa

    Republic of Connaught, you’re of course welcome to cheer-on fellow Irishmen – I welcome you doing that.

    What I don’t welcome is these politically-inspired hypocritical attacks on any British element from southerners. Politics should be kept out of it. I also don’t welcome the idea that the Irish Separatist flag is representative of the whole island – it ain’t.

  • Bah to some of the above.

    I couldn’t see the final round because I was on an extended road trip. But when the news came on the radio I was so happy that I think people outside my car probably heard my roars of delight.
    It would be great in The Open were to be played in N.I. in the near future. I will go home for it.

  • DoctorWho

    The FAI are reported to be interested in McDowell, McIlroy and Clarke…oh wait.

  • Charminator

    Well said Republic of Connaught.

    These golfers can be Ulstermen and Irishmen and I see no reason for thinking they should choose between one or the other. I recall many years ago watching a young Wayne McCullough carry the Irish flag at the Olympics and I think the vast majority of our island would have shared a sense of pride in seeing a young Protestant lad from Belfast feel comfortable carrying a flag which – for all the history and violence – has at it’s heart an honest aspiration to include all on this island. Those who carried the flag may certainly not always have lived up to the best of its intentions, but the sincere aspiration remains constant.

    In any event, whatever the politics of it – and as we all know, for better or worse, sport is full of it – it’s a great thing when golf is in such a strong position on this island, be it north, south, east or west.

    Congratulations to Darren and Rory and hope they have a good old time down in Kerry.

  • Republic of Connaught

    Ayeyerma,

    I agree with you about the flags.

    IMO the best flag used on this island is the Irish rugby flag. A flag that offends no one on the island and includes everyone. .

  • dwatch

    USPGA: Irish 5-1 to pick up title
    By Derek Mcgovern 19/07/2011

    Three major victories in little more than a year for Northern Irishmen is reason to celebrate and normally Northern Irishmen need no reason to celebrate.

    Three Irishmen walked past a pub…..well, it could happen.

    Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Darren Clarke all had their supporters back home in Ulster but I wouldn’t have backed any of them.

    It is the first time three men from Northern Ireland have had Majors in their pocket since the height of the Troubles.

    Clarke had winning form and is a noted links player but pre-tournament odds of 200-1 tell you all you need to know about his chances. He had none.

    His victory is heartwarming for all blokes of a certain age who could do with losing a few pounds. He’s from the Chubby Chandler stable, the rest of us from the chubby-chaser stable.

    Clarke and Chandler were yesterday due to embark on a weightwatchers programme. Dazza can’t believe he hasn’t lost any weight despite a month of careful eating – he has even added salad to every meal.

    Clarke is a 42-year-old man in the body of a fat fifty-nine-year-old yet is shacked up with a former beauty queen. Maybe it’s the links effect.

    Clarke called The Open “the oldest, the biggest, and the best” – the very words his bird uses for him.

    Paddy Power offer 5-1 for an Irishman to pick up next month’s USPGA and 33-1 to pick up a beauty queen.

    Golfers represented by Chandler have won all three Majors so far and Power offer 3-1 for a Chubby Slam.

    Yes, I agree, that does sound obscene but 3-1 is actually a decent price because it brings in Ernie Els, Lee Westwood, arguably the best player never to win a Major, and of course Clarke, arguably the worst player ever to win one.

    After wins in recent years for Clarke, Paul Lawrie, Todd Hamilton, Ben Curtis and Louis Oosthuizen, they’re thinking of changing the name of the tournament from The Open to The Open-Mouthed.

    Read more: http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/columnists/mcgovern/2011/07/19/uspga-irish-5-1-to-pick-up-title-115875-23282019/#ixzz1SYnBG0ea

  • stewart1

    “The FAI are reported to be interested in McDowell, McIlroy and Clarke…oh wait”

    dr

    All three have always been proud members of the GUI
    ( http://www.gui.ie/welcome.asp ) and like the majority of other sports here, it’s on an all island basis representing Ireland.

    Rory summed it up pretty well when speaking about this year’s Irish open

    “I think every golfer has a special place in his or her heart for their national Open and I am no different. To win in front of a home crowd is something we don’t get the chance to do that often, so I’d love to win the title.

  • JM

    Rory seems to be infected with the flag disease of NI. Of all the Irish golfers – none of Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowery, Paul McGinley don’t have their websites adorned with tricolours. GMac or Darren Clarke don’t bother with the Ulster Banner on their websites. On his twitter page, Rory states that he is from Belfast, GB. Someone should explain to him that Belfast is in Northern Ireland, not Great Britain.

    I wonder what kind of a reception Rory’s new Polish girlfriend will get in Belfast!

  • Too much whinging, I believe.
    Well done all of our island’s super golfers, North and South.

  • dwatch

    JM, “Rory seems to be infected with the flag disease of NI. Of all the Irish golfers – none of Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowery, Paul McGinley don’t have their websites adorned with tricolours.”

    Its nasty enought having to deal with English newspaper reporters slagging him off and re-twisted and spinning Rory’s words from his website to suit their spiteful agenda, without Irish republicans attacking him now for showing the Northern Ireland flag on his website.

    Here’s Rory’s post championship press conference transcript:

    RORY McILROY: Yeah, it’s been a tough week for me. I felt like I did well the first couple of rounds, and I just struggled a bit in the bad weather at the weekend.

    Q. It just seems to be the links require a lot more, and when you don’t get any breaks it’s almost impossible to win?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, I’m not a fan of golf tournaments that the outcome is predicted so much by the weather. It’s not my sort of golf. Yeah, I’m disappointed with the way I finished obviously, but I’ll just have to wait until next year to try and make a good run at this tournament.

    Q. Will you automatically look ahead to the Irish Open and the U.S. PGA coming up?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, exactly. I’m looking forward to getting back to America, playing in Akron, and obviously the PGA and the Irish Open is a big one for us, as well. It’s a week that I sort of enjoy. But yeah, looking forward to getting back and playing in Akron, playing the PGA and getting back into some nice conditions.

    Q. Is it possible to draw anything from this week?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, of course. All I was trying to think about was winning this tournament. There’s no point in coming in thinking I’m the U.S. Open champion, I’m going to do well. You can’t really think like that.

    Q. When is the last time you took a penalty for a ball moved by the wind?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, it’s been a long time. I can’t really remember.

    Q. The weather was just not your friend, was it?
    RORY McILROY: Was not, no. But that’s The Open Championship, and that’s the way some years go.

    Q. If you’re going to contend in this championship you’re going to have to deal with the weather.
    RORY McILROY: It’s either that or just wait for a year when the weather is nice.
    No, I mean, my game is suited for basically every golf course and most conditions, but these conditions I just don’t enjoy playing in really. That’s the bottom line. I’d rather play when it’s 80 degrees and sunny and not much wind.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, I mean, I can. It’s just being comfortable doing that, and there’s no point in changing your game for one week a year.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Obviously Clarke is so good in this weather that it’s not surprising to see him up there. Mickelson is playing great. He’s played a lot of these Opens and tried to adapt his game to it. Yeah, I mean, there’s a little bit of experience that comes into it, but then you’ve got the likes of Rickie Fowler and Anthony Kim who are up there and don’t have much experience on links.

    Q. After Congressional people are looking at you as the next great thing in golf.
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, of course, I’ve just won one. I’ve won three tournaments as a pro, to start talking about winning 18 majors and this and that, yeah, that was very premature.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, I obviously have high expectations myself, and I know if the weather had have been a little better this week, I probably would have been able to contend a bit more. But it’s just the way it goes.

    Q. You talked at the beginning of the week about how you wished you could bottle the mentality you had at Congressional. What would this week’s mentality look like?
    RORY McILROY: A bit frustrated. Yeah, it’s fine. I got a bit down whenever my ball moved on 7 today. I was just like, this isn’t — it’s just not — I don’t know, it’s just tough to be — you’re looking at an eight-foot birdie putt and then all of a sudden it’s for a par and then you’re a bit scrambled and you miss it and end up making bogey.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: There was a few oscillating, but that was the only one.

    Q. Playable?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah.

    Q. You looked like you just sort of gave up. Did it take the wind out of your sails?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, I got off to nice start on the second hole but then a pretty bad shot on the third. But no, I knew even today anything around even par was going to be a decent score again. I bogeyed the last two holes. If I had have parred those it would have looked pretty respectable.

    Q. Will being taken out of the spotlight the next few weeks be a good thing?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, definitely. I’m looking forward to, yeah, getting home for a week and then going to the Irish Open. Irish Open is obviously a big week for us. But yeah, I mean, I’m still one of this year’s major winners, so there’s always going to be a little bit of expectation and a bit of pressure on you.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, I mean, hopefully if the weather is decent at home, I’m going to spend a few days getting my swing back to where it needs to be. You know, the wind sort of messes it up a little bit, so I’ll work for two or three days just working on my swing and getting it back into a nice groove, and then I’ll take it easy and head to the Irish Open next week or the week after.

    Q. Are you set in stone about your views on links golf?
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, of course, yeah.

    Q. Wind never really been your friend?
    RORY McILROY: No, not really. All the amateur tournaments I’ve won, they were played on links courses but they were all relatively calm. So I just play better and my game is more suited to calm conditions. Just glad I’m in the clubhouse. I’m just glad I’m in.
    It’s tough, on 14 I hit driver, 2-iron, 6-iron into the 14th, so it’s tough.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, he holed a good putt. I think that was probably to get him in Akron, so it was a good score from him to get himself back in the top 50. I’m pleased for him, as well, because I always enjoy going out and playing with Sergio.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: No, I mean, for the PGA I usually just — I use Akron as a bit of a warm-up week, practice and hit a few more balls than I usually do in a tournament week and get ready for the week after. It’s always nice to get yourself into contention. I think I shot four decent scores last year and finished in the Top 10, so that was a nice way to get myself going into the PGA.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: No, I knew the golf course as much as I could have, and no, it was just a pity that the weather just didn’t behave itself for me.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, it’s fantastic. I had dinner with him last night at the ISM house and he’s in great form. He’s great in this weather, and as long as he keeps doing the same things and keeps going through the same thought processes, I can’t see anyone beating him in this weather.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, it’ll be a very emotional victory for a lot of people. You know, he’s had to go through a lot of things, and it’s almost as if he’s the — especially back home in Northern Ireland, he’s the forgotten man a little bit with Graeme doing what he did last year and then me coming on. So it would be fantastic to see him win. It would be great.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, he has been. He’s been fantastic. He’s been more a great friend than anything else. He always sends me texts when he’s not playing, sent me texts all week at the U.S. Open, and yeah, he’s been a great help. Anything I’ve needed or wanted to know, he’s always been on the other end of the phone, which has been a great help for me.

    Q. (Inaudible.)
    RORY McILROY: Yeah, it would be. Well, he missed Munich for mine, so I don’t think I’ll miss a tournament for his, but I’ll definitely be there and I’ll definitely be one of the last ones to go to bed

    Courtesy of http://www.asapsports.com

    http://www.rorymcilroy.com/golf-players-news-detail/id/1555/c/2.html

  • dwatch

    JM, “Rory seems to be infected with the flag disease of NI. Of all the Irish golfers – none of Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowery, Paul McGinley don’t have their websites adorned with tricolours.”

    Had Rory run around with a Northern Ireland, or Union Flag over his shoulders when he won the US open like Harrington did with the Tri colour after winning the 2007 UK open Irish republicans would have all blown their overheated steam relief valves with resentment and anger.

    ‘Harrington calls for British Open return to Ireland’
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2007/07/23/us-golf-open-harrington-ireland-idUSL2248802220070723

  • Combine the two, the “British and Irish” Open and you can fly your flag whilst, hopefully, you’ll permit us to fly ours.

  • ayeYerMa

    JM, more of us should be proud to be from NI and waving it’s flag, rather than focusing on the British or Irish elements. (then again, many of the Republican extremists who infest Slugger will NEVER be happy until the complete destruction of Northern Ireland).

    Also, “GB” is not only short for Great Britain – it’s also one of the ISO country codes for the United Kingdom along with “GBR”. That’s why “GB” appears on many of our car numberplates.

  • dwatch
  • JM

    “JM, more of us should be proud to be from NI and waving it’s flag, rather than focusing on the British or Irish elements. (then again, many of the Republican extremists who infest Slugger will NEVER be happy until the complete destruction of Northern Ireland).”

    I’d hazard a guess that there are plenty of people in Northern Ireland proud to wave its flag – there are more flags per square metre in Northern Ireland than anywhere else. LOL.

    Dwatch
    “Had Rory run around with a Northern Ireland, or Union Flag over his shoulders when he won the US open like Harrington did with the Tri colour after winning the 2007 UK open Irish republicans would have all blown their overheated steam relief valves with resentment and anger. ”

    Seems a bit more natural to fly the flag at the event rather than on your website. Even Harrington who does fly his flag at events doesn’t bother on his website. For the record, I don’t really care what flag Rory flies, but he could really do a job with his website. Its a bit amateurish in comparsion to the rest of the golfers.

  • Mike the First

    Charminator

    “These golfers can be Ulstermen and Irishmen and I see no reason for thinking they should choose between one or the other”

    You’d include being a Northern Irishman and a Briton to that list I hope.

  • dwatch

    “For the record, I don’t really care what flag Rory flies, but he could really do a job with his website. Its a bit amateurish in comparsion to the rest of the golfers.”

    JM, if you don’t care why do you keep hypocritically harping on about it. To call this years US open champion’s website “a bit amateurish” because he displays a Northern Ireland flag is beyond a joke.

  • MonkDeWallyDeHonk

    Mike the First

    “These golfers can be Ulstermen and Irishmen and I see no reason for thinking they should choose between one or the other”

    “You’d include being a Northern Irishman and a Briton to that list I hope.”

    I can’t speak for Charminator but I certainly would. It seems to me that Rory is trying to avoid most of this British and Irish stuff and fair play to him. No-one outside the North gives a s**t.

    However, I agree that people from the North can see themselves as Ulsterman, Irishmen, Northern Irishmen, Britons or some combination as they wish.

    That seems to be more of an issue for many NI “fans” on here who object to people from the North seeing themselves as Irish and acting accordingly.

    I trust that you feel that the attitude you expressed applies equally in all circumstances?

  • JM

    dwatch

    “JM, if you don’t care why do you keep hypocritically harping on about it. To call this years US open champion’s website “a bit amateurish” because he displays a Northern Ireland flag is beyond a joke.”

    I made one comment and responded to your comment that all Irish Republicans would be seething with resentment at the sight of Rory flying the NI flag (isn’t the Union flag the NI flag?). Seems more like you are seething that Harrington displayed the tricolour so prominently when he won his 3 Majors.

    The website looks a bit tacky and poorly designed in comparison to GMacs for instance. I’d say the say about Darren Clarke’s (same management) and he is not displaying any flags.

  • Brian

    I bet the only reason a lot of people from NI went to Rory’s website is to check what flag he had, or what nationality he describes himself as.

  • Charminator

    Fair point Mike the First, and for the record: yes, if a person’s preference with respect to identity is “Northern Irish” and British, essentially airbrushing Unionism’s traditional historical, cultural and social links with the rest of Ulster and Ireland as a whole, then that’s their right. I have absolutely no problems with that.

    I can’t say I’m thrilled that any great number of folk would seek to advance such an identity, least of all given the traditional affiliation with “Ulster” which all in the North have had, but be that as it may, it is a person’s right under the GFA and I respect that. I do think that a great many – including dare I say that Ulster and Ireland great, Trevor Ringland, and in the South, the Orange brethern of Rossnowlagh, would view such an identity as unfortunate given our shared rich history. It’s also something which a great many Britons (from Britain, as opposed to from anywhere in Ireland) find slightly quixotic. I’ve always believed that Ireland (north, south, east or west) is often at its strongest when we work together, in a spirt of mutual respect and partnership. The all-island business pitches of recent years I think show this, as does our rugby team’s successes, the joint governance of fisheries or tourism etc. Linking the North with the South, for example, in a tourist context, makes far more sense than with Yorkshire or Wales. I do wonder if those seeking identities such as “Northern Irish” and British alone, showing very minimal recognition of their common cultural and social history with Ulster and Ireland, are more often than not advancing a view of these isles which would like to ignore the existence of the rest of Ireland, almost blissfully cut it off. That, I think, would be unfortunate as the realities of recent years have shown that Unionism’s leaders are far more prepared to work with the South than at any time in generations.

  • WindsorRocker

    The “British” in British Open refers to the entire British Isles. The whole structures of Golf are based in a pre-partition and pre-independence Ireland.
    Our best amateurs play Walker Cup in a single British Isles team. The same was true of our professional golfers in the Ryder Cup until the Europeans were brought in to make it more competitive. Irish amateur teams still play in the Home Internationals against England, Scotland and Wales.

    So where Golf is concerned, it is unfair to pigeon hole any of our golfers as Irish but not British or indeed the other way around.

  • nightrider

    Correct, Windsor.
    The term ‘GB and Ire’ is used as a denomination, although for tournaments all the home nations are listed as WAL, ENG, NIR etc, along with the appropriate flag. The Northern Ireland flag flew at Royal St Georges for NIR golfers. The same flag as FIFA and other sporting bodies use.
    The British Lions touring Rugby side is also a British Isles team, although lately, political correctness has led to some Southern Irish media referring to a johnny come lately ‘British and Irish Lions’ A term no-one in Rugby uses -but this is all academic. The golfers and rugby players don’t care. Only football is parochial.
    Oh and GAA.

  • gréagóir o frainclín

    Another marvellous win that has put British golf firmly on the map. OBE’s all round!

  • gréagóir o frainclín

    ……..but look folks …the proper title today is The United Kingdom of Great Britain and NORTHERN IRELAND. Before partition it was The United Kingdom of Great Britain and IRELAND. This title recognise the island of Ireland as a seperate entity from the island of Great Britain that is comprised of England, Scotland and Wales. So best to describe the golfers as ‘Northern Irish’ like the rest of the folks from that place called Northern Ireland (which is not Great Britain) but part of the island of Ireland that lies to the west of the island of Great Britain.
    But I’ll gladly call folk ‘British’ if they want to be called that…. or indeed whatever they want!

  • MonkDeWallyDeHonk

    NightRider

    “Southern Irish media referring to a johnny come lately ‘British and Irish Lions’ A term no-one in Rugby uses”

    What rubbish! The BBC frequently call the team “The British and Irish Lions”. I was living in NZ during the last tour and everyone involved with the team and the media (UK +NZ) refer to the team as “The British and Irish Lions”. I now live in Australia and the team is always referred to as “The British and Irish Lions”.

    You and your friends may not like the term or use it . However, it certainly isn’t a minority of “Southern Irish” media who use the term.

    It is you who are in the minority.

  • JM

    Nightrider:
    “The British Lions touring Rugby side is also a British Isles team, although lately, political correctness has led to some Southern Irish media referring to a johnny come lately ‘British and Irish Lions’ A term no-one in Rugby uses -but this is all academic. The golfers and rugby players don’t care. Only football is parochial.

    Since when was Keith Wood ‘no-one in Rugby’ – particularly Lions Rugby? He seemed to care enough to lead the charge to change it.

  • Mark

    Cannot agree with your above comments regarding the Irish media .
    Whenever a test is played the stadium announcer always introduces the British and Irish lions . The British Media always refer the team as the British and Irish lions unless of course the team has had a great match and they are refered to a the British lions but that’s par for the course ( mainly on sky ). Most punters these days just refer to the team as the lions ” are you going down the pub for the lions match ” .

    You could agrue that the contributions made by the Irish players from Willy John through to Brian O Driscoll should mean that the next time the stadium accouncer introduces the teams it will be The Irish and British lions .

    I’m sure if Seymour sees this he may have something to say , but i did say my statement could be argued.

  • ayeYerMa

    Since Little Irelander Republicans have probably moaned and moaned and moaned until some PC do-gooder caved in on this absurd “British and Irish” Lions name, I wonder what the reaction would be if NI Unionists reciprocated with the same petty behaviour?! How about renaming the Ireland rugby team the “Ireland and Ulster” rugby team or the “Irish and Northern Irish” rugby team or the “Irish Republican and Northern Irish” rugby team?! The squealing we would have to listen to from Republicans would be immense!

  • MonkDeWallyDeHonk

    AyeYerMa

    “The squealing we would have to listen to from Republicans would be immense!”

    I think anyone would be hard pressed to match the “squealing” from NI “fans” when players from the 6 counties choose to represent the RoI rather than the GSTQ “No Surrender” brigade at Windsor Park.

    The fact is the the commonly internationally accepted name (outside NI backwoodsmen) is the “British and Irish Lions”.

    It doesn’t really matter what you and your friends think – it’s a fact.

  • Mike the First

    MonkDeWallyDeHonk

    Very much so.

    One caveat though – remember “Irish” is a word used to mean more than one “identity”, if I can put it like that. Those from my tradition who subcribe to an Irish identity are unlikely to connect it with the Tricolour, or the institutions or citizenship of the Republic of Ireland.

  • Mike the First

    Charminator

    I wouldn’t get too caught up in the idea of a Northern Irish identity meaning ignoring the rest of the island of Ireland or the rest of the British Isles/these islands. It comes naturally to me as my primary identity being with my country, Northern Ireland.

    Going back to golfers, Rory McIlroy put his identity this way to a PGA Tour interviewer:

    “Q. Just a completely unrelated question, but I’ve always wanted to ask you this, do you consider yourself more Irish or British?

    RORY McILROY: Pass.

    I’m Northern Irish, I hold a British passport, so there you go.”

    By the way, I think you’re misinterpresting unionists’ connection with “Ulster”, This was a term regularly used as being synonymous with “Northern Ireland”, especially in the second half of the 20th century – identifying as an “Ulsterman” (or woman) was a often6 county not a 9 county reference in this instance, and this “Ulster” identity has to some extent merged into and evolved into a Northern Irish identity.

  • Mike the First

    Monk De Wally De Honk

    My “very much so” was in answer to your question posed to me, not to your insulting and offensive reference to NI fans as “the GSTQ “No Surrender” brigade at Windsor Park”. Respect only goes so far it seems.

    BTW I can’t agree with your comment that “It seems to me that Rory is trying to avoid most of this British and Irish stuff and fair play to him. No-one outside the North gives a s**t”, because this latter sentence isn’t borne out.

    Aside from the PGA Tour questioner I mentioned above, there is a lot of speculation out there in internetland on Rory’s identity, not I would warrant coming from NI in any great quantity, for example:

    http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=2056304207

    http://www.thescore.ie/poll-do-you-consider-rory-mcilroy-to-be-british-or-irish-159435-Jun2011/

    http://hubpages.com/hub/Rory-McIlroy-Identity-Crisis

    http://www.irishtimes.com/blogs/deadrubber/2011/06/20/british-irish-does-it-really-matter/

    Much of it emanating from the ROI it seems.

  • dwatch

    Just as expected:

    Is Rory McIlroy ready to up sticks for America?
    By James Corrigan
    Thursday, 4 August 2011

    Read more: http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/sport/golf/is-rory-mcilroy-ready-to-up-sticks-for-america-16031983.html#ixzz1U2N41U9T

    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/sport/golf/is-rory-mcilroy-ready-to-up-sticks-for-america-16031983.html

    “I can see Rory McIlroy packing UK & Europe in and going to join Graham McDowell on the American circuit & live in the US were he knows will be better appreciated.”

    “McIlroy: I hate the weather and I can’t wait to get back to America’s sunshine”

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/golf/article-2015815/BRITISH-OPEN-2011-Rory-McIlroy-wait-to-America.html#ixzz1SQxfwdDi

    “Despite all the hype McIlroy’s hopes are gone with the wind”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/golf/despite-all-the-hype-mcilroys-hopes-are-gone-with-the-wind-2315457.html

    “The Open 2011: Prospects gloomy for Rory McIlroy as he bemoans Sandwich weather”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/golf/8643884/The-Open-2011-Prospects-gloomy-for-Rory-McIlroy-as-he-bemoans-Sandwich-weather.html