No open top bus for star McIlroy

Published Tuesday, 21 June 2011
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US Open winner Rory McIlroy has arrived back in Northern Ireland, but says there will be no open-top bus tour for his homecoming because he is "a golfer not a football team".

The 22-year-old returned by private plane on Tuesday evening after touching down at London Heathrow earlier in the day.

McIlroy, who broke records as he won in stunning style at the US Open in Maryland, is set to receive a hero's welcome at Holywood Golf Club as it celebrates his homecoming on Wednesday.

However the champion ended any speculation of an open-top bus trip around Belfast in a message posted on the micro-blogging website Twitter.

He tweeted: "And for anyone who's interested there'll be no open top bus parade in Belfast! I'm a golfer not a football team!!"

McIlroy will receive a special welcome at Stormont Castle with First Minister Peter Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness.

"It's great to be back home," the golfer said.

"Even nicer to have this on my kitchen table!!" he added, with a picture of his gleaming trophy resting on his tabletop.

McIlroy spent the day in the midlands filming with TV presenters Ant and Dec for a forthcoming show.

The US Open is his first major tournament win, and McIlroy is now setting his sights on the British Open.

Mcllroy said he is planning to take a three-week break before the tournament.

"I've got three weeks off and then the British Open. So I'm just going to take it easy for the next couple of weeks and let it sink in," he told reporters at Heathrow.

He has also said he will play in the Irish Open in August where he will be sure to attract a massive home crowd to Killarney.

McIlroy shattered records in Maryland as he clinched his maiden major title by eight shots with a 16 under par total on Sunday.

The Co Down golfer became the youngest winner of the title since Bobby Jones in 1923 and the youngest major winner since Tiger Woods at the Masters in 1997.

He is also the second consecutive champion from Northern Ireland after Graeme McDowell last year, and he said the success of his good friend GMAC helped him believe he could do it too.

Speaking to UTV on Monday, McIlroy said: "I think Northern Ireland is the best place in the world".

"Obviously I'm biased because I'm from there! I love getting home and I'm very proud of where I'm from. It's going to be great to celebrate with my close friends and family."

© UTV News
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17 Comments
Mary B. in Newry wrote (1,165 days ago):
A big CONGRATS to you Rory and your mum and dad. You had us all on the edge of our seats. You brought Northern Ireland to the headlines on Sunday night and the scum off the country took the shine of you. I would have liked to see you go through the city in an open top something else that would have brought us all out onto the streets and would have drowned the scum from the headlines but if you say no open top i go with that. Lets get afew more big one. WELL DONE WE ARE ALL VERY PROUD OF YOU. CATHOLIC AND PRODESTANTS
Michael Smyth in Sydney, Australia wrote (1,165 days ago):
Northern Ireland is not the best place in the world Rory....still a hole but not as bad as yesteryear.......but a hole nonetheless, the reason many from both tribes got out.....keep referring to it as Northern Ireland/North of Ireland/Ulster/Uladh/6 Counties/the 'Province'/our wee country....keep em all happy still a beautiful island....but puhlease.....don't try and explain it to anyone else and think they will care....esp this time of year....isnt this bigoted silver hair/bowler hat/sash & reactionary riot season?
Cat in Newtownards wrote (1,165 days ago):
Well done Rory! Amazing talent and a shinning example!! Maybe if all these 20 (odd) year olds, who are causing trouble in the Short Strand, focused on achieving their best in something then Northern Ireland would definitely be "the best place in the world"
Mike Donnelly in Durham wrote (1,165 days ago):
Well done Rory but sad that someone from Holywood can be good at golf but more from east Belfast are accomplished rioters...
catriona in derry wrote (1,165 days ago):
to iseult- 'we all knew northern ireland was the best place in the world' lets not get carried away here. so theres a few good people that we should be proud of but to say its the best place in the world... take a look at the other news head lines on here....
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