Rory McIlroy will make a much-anticipated return to the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open when the World Number One tees it up at the second Rolex Series event of the 2020 Race to Dubai, taking place at Mount Juliet Estate from May 28-31.
The four-time Major winner will join his fellow Northern Irishman, close friend and tournament host Graeme McDowell, in a star-studded field which also includes defending champion Jon Rahm and the reigning Open Champion Shane Lowry.
McIlroy will be targeting a second victory in an event which he himself hosted from 2015 to 2018 – helping elevate the historic national open to become one of the European Tour’s eight premier Rolex Series events.
The 30-year-old famously lifted the trophy in 2016, delighting the home crowds with a swashbuckling display down the stretch to hold off Scot Russell Knox – who went on to claim the title in 2017 – and Welshman Bradley Dredge.
“I’m looking forward to it a lot,” said McIlroy. “It’s a bit different going back for a May date as opposed to July, and at a parkland course at Mount Juliet. I’ve never played the course but got good memories – it was the first time I ever watched Tiger Woods play in person.
“My dad drove me down and we watched the WGC there and that was really cool, so it’ll be exciting to tee it up there myself and try to win a tournament there.
“I enjoyed hosting the event – it’s a privilege to host your national open. I would say to GMac, just try and prepare as best he can for the tournament and make sure he gets his work in before the week. You’ve got a lot going on, but I think everyone who hosts a tournament knows that.”
Mount Juliet Estate already boasts a prestigious list of winners after a three-year stint of hosting the event – with Nick Faldo, Bernhard Langer and Sam Torrance winning there in 1993, 1994 and 1995 respectively – and McIlroy will be hoping to join this list in May.
The luxury five-star resort in Kilkenny also hosted Shell’s Wonderful World of Golf in 1997, a challenge match between Tom Watson and Fred Couples, won by the latter, as well as the WGC-American Express Championship in 2002 and 2004 – won by Tiger Woods and Ernie Els respectively.
Early bird ticket prices for the 2020 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open begin at €13 for the Wednesday Pro-Am day, with Thursday and Friday day tickets available for a special price of €23 and Saturday and Sunday tickets beginning at €27. Fans can enjoy five days of world-class golf and entertainment for only €83 if they purchase their early bird season tickets prior to March 3.
Children under 12 years of age are entitled to free entry when accompanied by an adult, day junior tickets for those between 12 and 17 years of age are €10 (€25 for a season ticket) while students aged between 18 and 24 with valid student cards, and over 65s, can avail of a concession ticket – €15 for Thursday and Friday, €20 for Saturday and Sunday (€60 for a season). Parking access can be purchased for €5 per day, or €10 for a season parking ticket which covers all five days.
The only official sales channel to purchase tickets for this year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is via the ticketing platform Eventbrite (here). The resale of Dubai Duty Free Irish Open tickets on unofficial platforms contravenes the European Tour’s ticket terms and conditions and such sales render the ticket void.
Official Hospitality tickets are also available on the ticketing page, or alternatively contact the European Tour’s dedicated Hospitality Sales Team, who will be happy to answer any queries and discuss the various hospitality options, on firstname.lastname@example.org, register your interest here or +44 (0) 1344 840681.