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Rory McIlroy hopes that the R&A can host the Open Championship outside of the United Kingdom for the first time.

The four-time major winner believes the governing body are “seriously looking into” it, with Portmarnock in Ireland being a possible venue.

McIlroy, who is playing at this week’s Irish Open, believes the Dublin course “would be fantastic”.

He said: “Having a course that’s so close to a major city, so close to a major airport, having a great golf course, I think it would be amazing.

“I think they (R&A) are seriously looking at it.”

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The Open is returning to Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland in 2025, six years after Shane Lowry lifted the Claret Jug.

But McIlroy argues that Portmarnock should be given as much consideration for the men’s final major of the year.

He added: “I was looking forward to Portrush but in terms of how it would do commercially – there’s so many other considerations to hosting a major championship apart from it being a great golf course.”

Portmarnock is eligible to host R&A events after voting in 2021 allowed women members for the first time in the club’s history.

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Nine women were elected as full members in December last year.

And the course will host the 121st Women’s Amateur Championship in 2024, as it looks to build a reputation as a championship golf course.

Bunkered contacted the R&A, but it declined to comment.

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John Turnbull A graduate of the University of Stirling, John joined the bunkered team in 2023 as a Content Producer, with a responsibility for covering all breaking news, tour news, grassroots content and much more besides. A keen golfer, he plays the majority of his golf at Falkirk Golf Club. Top of his 'bucket list' is a round of Pebble Beach... ideally in the company of Gareth Bale.

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