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Rory McIlroy likely to miss Irish Open as he slams door shut on Europe return due to Covid

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Rory McIlroy admits he is unlikely to play in Europe this year

Rory McIlroy admits he is unlikely to play in Europe this year

AP

Rory McIlroy admits he is unlikely to play in Europe this year

Rory McIlroy admits he's likely to slam the door on the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and the European Tour this year as the COVID-19 pandemic makes his fearful of travel.

The world No 2 is keen to put four solid rounds together for the first time since he emerged from lockdown and contend for the WGC FedEx St Jude Invitational in Memphis as he counts down to next week's PGA Championship.

But when asked if he had any plans to return to Europe should the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open eventually get the green light, the Co Down man admitted he was highly reluctant to cross the pond again this year.

"I have no idea about the Irish Open," McIlroy said. "I have no clue. You know as much as me. And honestly, I don't know if I see myself going back to Europe this year.

"I don't know. I don't know if I want to travel, I don't know if I want to be exposed to more things and more people. So I don't know. I have no idea.

"I am taking it week by week and have my scheduled planned until after the US Open and I have no idea what I am going to do after that."

McIlroy admitted that while he understands why Lee Westwood and Eddie Pepperell are not travelling to San Francisco for next week's PGA Championship, he'd travel to Europe for a Major.

"I understand their plight because I'm just after saying I don't know if I would travel in the fall and go and play some of these other events in Europe, but if it was a major championship, it would probably be different and I probably would go over and play it," he said.

McIlroy's immediate focus is on TPC Southwind which starts today.

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