McIlroy set for Irish Open at Carton House

Rory McIlroy will compete at next year’s rescheduled Irish Open at Carton House.

The dates and venue has yet to be officially confirmed but the national showpiece is set to swap slots with the BMW International Open and move forward to the week after the US Open at Pinehurst.

But McIlroy, competing in the BMW Masters in Shanghai, let slip that the event looks set for the Kildare venue, telling reporters: “I’ve heard it’s going back to Carton House.”

For the past four seasons, including 2011 when he captured the US Open, McIlroy has never competed in the week following the season’s second.

However that policy is set to change next summer.

McIlroy admitted: “It’s tough going from competing in a Major and straight back onto the Tour, as will be the case for the Irish Open next year.

“It is the Irish Open and I am expected to play. But it’s not a bad thing as you play two in-a-row and then after the Irish I’m playing the Scottish and The Open.

“I can see where BMW are coming from with wanting to have their event two weeks after the US Open.”

And McIlroy’s also confirmed plans to compete in the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, the 25th anniversary Omega Dubai Desert Classic, the WGC – Accenture Match-Play Championship, Honda Open and WGC – Cadillac Championship.

McIlroy added a second round 72 to remain at one under par in continuing cold and windy conditions of the BMW Masters.

American Luke Guthrie extended his lead by four shots with a round of 71 for an eight under tally.

Irish Open winner, Paul Casey (70) is among six players in second spot at four under par.

Pádraig Harrington boosted hopes of qualifying for the season-ending DP – World Tour Championship with the Dubliner adding a second straight 72 to remain at level par.

Harrington arrived in Shanghai a lowly 105th on the World Rankings and unconcerned by all the media fuss in dropping outside the top-100 for a first time in 14 years.

Also on level par is Graeme McDowell who dropped three shots over his last five holes in a 74; Paul McGinley birdied his opening three holes for a 71 that leaves him on four over while Shane Lowry had a similar score to be one further back.

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