In-form McIlroy set for Italian Open debut

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Rory McIlroy (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

Four-time Major Champion Rory McIlroy has announced he will make his debut at the 79th edition of the DS Automobiles Italian Open at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club, from September 15-18.

The World Number Three and newly crowned FedExCup champion will get his first look at the 2023 Ryder Cup venue on the outskirts of Rome as Italy prepares to host the 44th edition of golf’s greatest team event on September 29 – October 1, 2023, and the Northern Irishman is hoping to gather as much knowledge as possible of the revamped course as he targets a seventh consecutive appearance for Team Europe.

The 33-year-old has enjoyed a rich vein of form in 2022 and will tee it up on Italian soil for the first time having added a 22nd PGA TOUR title to his CV after he overturned a six-shot deficit in the final round of the TOUR Championship yesterday to become the first player to win the FedExCup three times. He also claimed the RBC Canadian Open in June, finished runner-up at April’s Masters Tournament and third at The Open Championship.

“Not only is the city of Rome steeped in history but so too is their national open, so I am really looking forward to the Italian Open this year,” said McIlroy, the current leader of the DP World Tour Rankings in partnership with Rolex.

“It’s the first time I have played in Italy, and I’ve heard the Italian fans are very passionate, so I’m excited to get out there and experience a new challenge.”

It is the third time Marco Simone has hosted Italy’s national open having previously done so in 1994 and 2021, the latter saw Dane Nicolai Højgaard crowned champion, and spectators can enjoy unrivalled vantage points of the on-course action as well as distant views of the famous Eternal City, including spectacular views of St Peter’s Basilica and of the Castle of Marco Simone.

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