• McIlroy reveals unexpected Olympic passion

    McIlroy reveals unexpected Olympic passion
    Rory McIlroy

    It’s well known that Rory McIlroy is a big sports fan when he’s not plying his own trade on the golf course.

    The former world number one paraded the Claret Jug on the pitch at his beloved Manchester United’s Old Trafford after winning the British Open in 2014.

    He is a massive Ulster and Ireland rugby fan and has been seen at NBA and NFL games in the United States where he now lives.

    But after a second-round 66 at the Tokyo 2020 golf tournament on Friday he revealed a secret Olympic sporting passion, and it’s not what most people might think.

    The four-time major winner said that if he could have visited just one other Olympic arena at this Covid-restricted Games, he would have loved nothing more to watch horse and riders dance to music in dressage.

    “The one thing that’s on tonight that I would love to go to, the one thing I’ve always wanted to go and see is dressage,” he revealed.

    “Always. It’s mesmerising and it’s on tonight at like 7:30 pm. I’ll watch it on TV. I watch it once every few years, obviously and it’s like, it’s just, it’s mesmerising and it’s really cool.”

    McIlroy is clearly getting into the Olympic spirit, having come in for criticism after the British Open for saying he’s playing at Tokyo 2020 for the good of golf, having never harboured a dream of winning an Olympic medal for Ireland.

    “I never obviously competed in an Olympic Games, I watched them from afar, but being a part of something that’s completely different and bigger than me and even our sport in general, that’s a pretty cool thing,” he said after his second round at Kasumigaseki Country Club.

    With the next Olympics just three years away in Paris, McIlroy is keen to be there and get the full experience without the pandemic restrictions and no spectators of Tokyo 2020.

    “I didn’t know if this was going to be my only Olympics that I play or whatever but I’m already looking forward to Paris,” he said.

    “Obviously this is a very watered-down experience compared to what it usually is so I’m looking forward to three years time.”

    Article written by

    Juandre Joubert