Rory to play for Ireland in the Rio Olympics…

Rory McIlroy decides to play for Ireland in Brazil in two years time…

Speaking before playing in the Irish Open Pro-Am, and appropriately wearing a green polo shirt, McIlroy explained his decision-making process.

“When I actually sat down and thought about it, had a little time to myself, it was because as a boy, as an amateur, my ambition was always to play for Ireland – whether to play on the six-man team for the European Championships or the Home Internationals’ 11-man team, that was always my goal.

“If you look at most of the other sports in this country – rugby being a main example – they see Ireland as one.

“And I have a lot of friends who play for Ulster who would say they’re Northern Irish but are very proud to pull on the green jersey, as I will be in a couple of years’ time.”

[Noises off:  Columnists swallowing rashly written words from two or three years ago…]

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty