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Prize money halved at Rory-bound Irish Open

The prize money for this summer’s Irish Open has been cut to €1.5m, half of what was on offer for last year’s event.

Having failed to land sponsorship deal since 3 – the mobile phone operator - ended its association with the event, the €3m prize money was always at risk.

But US Open champion Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell and Padraig Harrington – Ireland’s three major champions of recent years – have already signed up for the tournament, which is to be held at the end of July in Killarney.

Current champion Ross Fisher will also return to the scenic Kerry venue.

But big names like Bubba Watson, Ian Poulter and the Molinari brothers have already opted for Germany that weekend instead.

The Irish Open was first held in Killarney in 1991 and 1992 and was won both times by Nick Faldo

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