This morning, Pat Kenny [during a chat with sports reporter Paraic Lodge on RTE R1] relayed his disappointment over reports that Rory McIlroy, from Holywood, Co Down, “feels more British” than Irish.

Kenny: “What about that Great British golfer, McIlroy?”

Lodge: “He’s in flying form at the moment.”

Kenny: “He wasn’t British when he was taking the help from the GUI [Golf Union of Ireland], was he?”

Lodge: “Well he’s acknowledged that in his interview with the Mail. He’s said he’s got so much support from the GUI. He learned his game a lot, under the Irish banner. But he is leaning towards British. He feels more British he…”

Kenny: “What a stupid thing to say. From a PR..I mean, from a PR perspective, what a stupid thing to say.”

Lodge: “Well maybe he’s just testing the ground, preparing us for breaking this news officially. But don’t they have the entitlement in Northern Ireland to declare for either country? So it’s just, I suppose, it’s just he has that entitlement and it’s important to point that out. But you strongly feel clearly that he should remain under the Irish?”

Kenny: “Well no, I just think the gloss has gone off his efforts for this island, shall we say. Anyway, move on.

Pic: golfcentraldaily

85 thoughts on “Rory?

        1. Mani

          Given it’s national suicide awareness day I find that ‘Boom’ offensive, suggesting as it does that you’ve shot yourself in the face. Reminding us of all the people who say ‘Boom’ and were, in fact, shot in the face.

      1. woesinger

        My thoughts are that it is irrelevant what nationality Rory McIlroy more closely identifies with and that whatever sort of parochial nationalistic outrage people like Pat Kenny feel is both disrespectful (why should the man change his mind because Pat Kenny has a sad?) and pointless (what the hell difference does it make to anyone other than Rory McIlroy what nationality Rory McIlroy identifies with?).

        But, you know, my first comment had the virtue of brevity.

    1. denis

      Yea but obviously Kenny gives a f**k .I h ope he is as quick to attack those footballers Mclean and Gibson etc who milked the NI system and then declared for the Republic.Mind your own business and let the Northern Irishman and best golfer in the world choose himself who to play for and stop sounding like such a bigoted tool.

  1. steve white

    whats kenny’s problem, your nationality is far more important then the PR aspect of your golfing support

  2. Tommy

    Jesus Kenny is being a complete asshole about it. It’s a sensitive issue for Rory and it is entirely up to him what he feels most comfortable with. His efforts were not for the benefit of the “island” but for himself and I suppose those in his immediate community of Holywood can share some pride in him.

    1. denis

      All of Northern Ireland are very proud of him.He is from Holywood Co Down; an Ulsterman and UK citizen so why would he choose team Ireland.Think its time the likes of Kenny got over the petty Irish Nationalism and realise that the world doesnt end in Dublin or Cork.Just appreciate and show some respect for who he is and stop trying to dictate his nationality for him and if you cant support him thats your choice .Isnt that what freedom is all about !

  3. Magoo

    Would have to agree that the timing isn’t great. Why bother inciting the ire of an entire nation when you don’t have to!?

    To be honest, if he goes either way it doesn’t really matter when he actually starts playing, but he had 4 years to keep people in the dark!

    1. True Kilcockian

      British is more profitable. Of course he went through the Irish structures when that suited him.

      Golfers are arseholes why should M’Ilory be any different.

    1. Paul

      Northern Ireland citizens can choose either to represent Ireland or GB&NI in the Olympics. I suppose it’s a bit sad that he doesn’t want to represent us, he is the number one golfer in the world, but it is his choice. Ireland has benefitted from NI athletes also- Wayne McCullagh, Jason Smyth etc.

      1. Quint

        Darron Gibson, McClean, etc are Northern Irish but declared for the South. Aiden McGeady is Scottish but is playing for the Republic. Think of the ‘heroes’ of Irish football who are probably more British than Irish: Jason McAteer, Ray Houghton, John Aldridge and so on…we did well claiming other nationalities. Deal with it.

        1. Peter

          McCulloch, Smyth, Gibson and McClean are actually Irish though. McGeady etc are not. That’s the difference.

  4. Matthew

    He’s a kid who grew up after the rest of the Islands evolved their nasty attitudes – grew up in the post-Good Friday Agreement north, in a middle class suburb of Belfast which is one of the wealthiest and least “disrupted”. In other words, he grew up without great exposure to the stupid and mind-numbing tribalism that defines so many here. It is therefore great to see him making his decisions based on his own instinctual feelings rather than some political nonsense. Pat Kenny just sounds incredibly bitter and encapsulates the worst kind of reaction to this.

    1. Steve

      Matthew I think the point being made by a number of people (including PK) was that his comments have nothing to do with “instinctual feelings” or a sense of identity. Its more of an instinctual feeling for his bank account which appears to be motivating them. If thats the case – its pretty disappointing for a person who a lot of young golfers (both north and south) look up to.

      He can play for who he wants, it doesn’t really bother me. But as proud as say Stephen Ferris or Rory Best would be to pull on the British & Irish Lions jersey – they would never have considered pulling on a English, Welsh or Scottish jersey when starting their international careers.

      1. JoeO

        Except that Rory isn’t pulling on an English, Welsh or Scottish jersey. If he has decided to declare for the UK (and he hasn’t explicitly stated that he will do that), he would be pulling on a British jersey. He is one of those people from Northern Ireland (one of the majority) who is and wants to be a British citizen and thus, if the chance comes, would choose to play for Britain in the Olympics. There are many other people in Northern Ireland (a large minority) who would not want to play for Britain but would want to play for Ireland.
        And we should accept people’s choices in these matters. And Pat Kenny should shut the f**k up with his out of date dangerous nationalistic throwaway remarks.

        1. Steve

          You’re missing my original point Joe O. I’m depise the tribal crap just as much as you appear to do. But its not the tribalism at issue, its the earning potential.

          This is one of the rare occassions I agree with PK. If McIlroy has taken the financial support of the GUI which represents the whole island, both nationalist and unionist golfer throughout his development and the flips them the middle finger when its suits him financially then that pretty crap on the bloke.

          1. steve white

            how is playing for GB flipping the FUI the finger, the gui supports northern irish too, how doesi the help his bank account ?

        1. Steve

          @Steve White: British companies will offer him a lot more money in totality, than Irish ones, to allow them to claim in advertising etc that their company helps the number one golfer in the world (who is British) stay on top of his game and be the best he can be.

        2. Steve

          @Steve White: British companies will offer him a lot more money in totality, than Irish ones, to allow them to claim in advertising etc that their company helps the number one golfer in the world (who is British) stay on top of his game and be the best he can be.

          @Oriel – not following but read the response to the 3rd question down.

  5. Don

    whether he likes it or not if he was born on this island hes irish. The politics of the matter is only a state of mind.

    1. Miles

      Even if he is an Irishman, having been born on the island of Ireland, he is still entitled to profess loyalty and pride in his British citizenship. In any event, I would wager that his decision to declare for IRL or GBNI will be less in the realm of politics and more in the realm of a calculated move to further his golfing career.

  6. Eoghany

    Look. You’re all right. Nobody gives a s##t what country he declares for. It’s just that, well, have we all not collectively been cheering on Rory in his efforts over the past 4 years??? In a kinda national pride context? Like c’mon Ireland sorta thing? No? And now it’s just… Oh! Ok! You’re British. I see. Well carry on sir.

  7. Clampers Outside

    Em, how many Irish soccer players learn under the Premiership… then play for Ireland. Leave the guy be, he does enough to promote the island as it is. So what if he wants to represent GB, more power to him. Well done lad and all that.

    And +1 to @Matthew above, well said.

    But, why, why does Pat say ”What a stupid thing to say. From a PR..I mean, from a PR perspective, what a stupid thing to say.” Pat used to be a reporter, but that is just pathetic of him to be taking a PR route, pathetic.

    “the gloss has gone off his efforts for this island” – No, it has not you spanner, Pat!

    G’wan Rory, love ya either way, just make sure you beat that womanising ass wipe Woods!

  8. Frank

    Struggling to care about this, whats one less knob golfer anyway?

    Who is the bigger prat, Pat or Rory?

    Probably Pat cos he has more influence and he JUST WON’T GO AWAY.

    1. Instant Karma Police

      So, Harrington wants Rory to declare as a Brit, so Harrington gets to play……….self interest…….great!

  9. EBS

    I think Irish Golf was hoping that Rory would declare himself Irish and play for us in the Olympics. But alas he has gone to the other side, Gmac and Darren Clarke will also follow.

      1. Congo

        Darren and GMac have always shown much more wit about their pronouncements. They play the Irish card and also the Ulster or “northern Irish” card. I cannot imagine either of them ever coming out and saying they are British – they are too astute Clarke especially, who is a Protestant from Dungannon, has always been very cute about it.
        I get the impression that McIlroy really hasn’t thought this one through, or indeed spent any time in his life mulling over the “national question”.

        Indeed, I think GMac and Harrington will be the Irish players at Rio. Assuming McIlroy is for GBNI along with Westwood or Donald.

        1. Paul

          Who knows who it will be, 4 years is a long time in golf. But I am sure GMac wouldn’t turn the chance to golf for Ireland in the Olympics, if the GB places were filled. Ireland might lose out on McIlroy, but will probably gain another way. Harrington makes a good point alright.

  10. Miles

    The head on him! He does look a bit Irish though but obviating his genetic heritage, surely as part of the Good Friday Agreement, he is entitled to define as Irish, British or both. I must say that I have absolutely no problem with him profiting from sporting structures in both jurisdictions either as an Irishman or a Briton. There has been much movement the other way from Northern Ireland to the Republic in the perhaps less salubrious world of soccer.

    1. Tim

      I was about to ask the question, what passport he carries. It’s pretty obvious then what nationality he considers himself to be. He’s not jingoistic about it and just wants to play golf. No point in us wanting him to be a ‘Republic of Ireland’ citizen.

  11. t

    Seems to me many folk’s passion to promote being Irish is based on keeping alive an old hatred of the British…

    It’s your life Rory, you do what you like buddy and feck those who say you’re this or that!

  12. Punt printer

    Any golfing fan knew this was coming. He’s never hidden the fact. ( odd timing to echo it in an interview though now though given Rio is really only when it’s an issue and that’s 4 years away ) . Oh and Pat…..move on.

  13. Tyrion Lannister

    Who cares? Golf is a “sport” for d*cks and he just happens to be a very rich d*ck with weird curly hair

  14. ANVIL

    If it wasn’t for Northerners, Travellers or women Ireland would have won f**k all at the Olympics.
    So it’s understandable that poor Paddy is aghast that a world-class sportsman declares for the country of his birth.

  15. mouldyman

    Come on now, did Rory appear on the Late Late Show or the Kelly Show chipping balls into a washing machine? It’s clear where his allegiance lies/has lain/laid/lapdanced

  16. Evan

    What kind of name is “Paraic”. That’s a new one. Or perhaps an Irish name (Padraic) mis-spelt by somebody whose culture more closely matches to that of the UK, than to Ireland.

  17. denis

    This guy Kenny takes the biscuit.Dont hear him crying about the footballers Mclean and Gibson to name only a few who were nurtured under the Northern Ireland set up and having played for NI at under age levels and then declaring for the Republic when their careers took off. Allow Rory to decide for himself who he plays for ! After all he has never made any secret in the past which flag he chooses to play under.Just leave the guy alone and stop bringing petty bigotry and politics into it.Lets all get behind the best golfer in the world and leave Kenny and his ilk to wallow in their own little bigoted worlds.

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