Rory McIlroy May Sidestep 2016 Olympic Games

Rory McIlroy has floated the possibility of not playing in the 2016 Olympic Games, so as to avoid conflict over which country he chooses to represent.

The world's No1 golfer, who is from Northern Ireland, faces a high-profile dilemma over whether to represent Great Britain or Ireland when the sport returns to the Olympic scene in three years' time. McIlroy is aware of the potential political repercussions of his decision, one he has admitted he is far from comfortable with making.

In a BBC documentary, to be screened on Thursday night, McIlroy said: "I just think being from where we're from, we're placed in a very difficult position. I feel Northern Irish and obviously being from Northern Ireland you have a connection to Ireland and a connection to the UK. If I could and there was a Northern Irish team, I'd play for Northern Ireland.

"Play for one side or the other – or not play at all because I may upset too many people. Those are my three options I'm considering very carefully."

Last year, McIlroy was involved in controversy when he claimed in one interview that he "felt more British than Irish".

Of those words, the 23-year-old added: "It was a moment, I don't want to say of weakness, but a moment of, I guess, frustration with it all."

Powered by article was written by Ewan Murray, for on Thursday 3rd January 2013 14.28 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


image: © Ed McDonald