World number one Rory McIlroy will return to Sydney in November to defend his Australian Open title, the Irish Echo has learned.
McIlroy won the title at Royal Sydney last December after a dramatic final round head-to-head tussle with local hero, Adam Scott.
He will defend it at The Australian Golf Club.
The NSW Government has once again played a role in coaxing the 25-year-old to Sydney.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Tourism and Major Events Andrew Stoner said the Australian Open Champion and current British Open Champion would return to play exclusively in Sydney at the 2014 Emirates Australian Open, to be held from 27-30 November.
“Securing Rory McIlroy is a hole in one for golf fans in NSW and a great boost to the State’s major events calendar,” Mr Stoner said.
“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.”
Golf Australia CEO Stephen Pitt said the Emirates 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.”