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McIlroy to choose between UK and Ire for Rio

Golf's world No1, Rory McIlroy, has suggested that he may be choosing to play for the Union Jack of Great Britain rather than the Green White and Gold of Ireland when golf rejoins the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2016.

Born in Holywood, near Belfast, McIlroy would be eligible for either team due to his Northern Irish roots. Indeed, he has already twice represented Ireland at the World Cup where the four countries that form Team GB play separately and Northern Irish players turn out for Ireland.

The noises emanating from camp McIlroy currently suggest that this may not be the case in four years time.

"What makes it such an awful position to be in is I have grown up my whole life playing for Ireland under the Golfing Union of Ireland umbrella," McIlroy told British newspaper The Daily Mail.

"But the fact is, I've always felt more British than Irish. Maybe it was the way I was brought up, I don't know, but I have always felt more of a connection with the UK than with Ireland.

"And so I have to weigh that up against the fact that I've always played for Ireland and so it is tough. Whatever I do, I know my decision is going to upset some people but I just hope the vast majority will understand."

In the media frenzy that followed these statements, the 23-year-old has attempted to backtrack some what, taking to social media platform Twitter and posting a letter.

''I wish to clarify that I have absolutely not made a decision regarding my participation in the next Olympics,'' McIlroy said.

''On a personal level, playing in the Olympics would be a huge honor. However, the games in Rio are still four years away and I certainly won't be making any decisions with regards to participating any time soon.''

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