‘Royal Liverpool’ won the title nine years ago… McIlroy wants to open the ‘King’s Gate’ again

Men’s world No. 2 Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland) will seek his first major championship in nine years at the 151st edition of The Open Championship ($16.5 million purse).

McIlroy will go for his third win of the season, 25th career victory and fifth major title on the U.S. Professional Golf Association (PGA) Tour when he competes in the 2023 edition of The Open at Royal Liverpool GC (par 71, 7383 yards) in Wirral, England.

Founded in 1860, The Open has been played for more than 150 years, barring extraordinary circumstances such as World War I and II and the COVID-19 pandemic, and is recognized as the “world’s oldest tournament” across all sports. The tournament is played on a rotating basis across 10 traditional links courses in England, Scotland 토토 and Northern Ireland, with this year’s course, Royal Liverpool GC, hosting The Open for the 12th time in nine years since 2014.

British icon Rory McIlroy was the last player to lift The Open trophy, a silver claret jug, at Royal Liverpool. After winning the 2011 U.S. Open, 2012 PGA Championship and 2014 The Open (July), McIlroy hasn’t won a major since his four-major victory at that year’s PGA Championship (August).

McIlroy warmed up for a return to glory last week with a stunning display of concentration in the final round of the Genesis Scottish Open at the Links Course in Scotland, birdieing the last two holes to win by a shot. McIlroy, who finished tied for third in the 150th edition of The Open at St. Andrews last year after a hotly contested battle with Cameron Smith (AUS), is eager to settle a long-standing score at the course where he won.

He’ll have to overcome some tough competition to do so. McIlroy will be joined by world number one Scott Schauffler (USA), world number three Jon Rahm (Spain), the 2023 Masters champion, world number three Brooks Koepka (USA), the 2023 PGA Championship winner, and world number one Tiger Woods (USA), who won The Open at Royal Liverpool in 2006, Defending champion Smith, 2014 runners-up Rickie Fowler (USA) and Sergio Garcia (Spain), and Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth (both USA) are all in contention for the final major title of the season.

The likes of 2019 champion Shane Lowry (IRL), Tyrrell Hatton, Tommy Fleetwood (GBR) and Viktor Hovlan (NOR) are among the favorites to defend European pride.

PGA Tour players Lim Sung-jae, Kim Si-woo, Kim Joo-hyung, Lee Kyung-hoon and Ahn Byung-hoon, as well as KPGA representatives Kim Bio and Kang Kyung-nam, will be looking to become the first Korean to win The Open. Ahn Byung-hoon and Kim Joo-hyung will be looking to build on the momentum they gained at the Scottish Open, where they shared the title with McIlroy. Ahn, a dramatic arrival at The Open, is the only Korean to have played at Royal Liverpool, having tied for 26th in 2014. Korean-American Seung-Soo Han (USA), winner of this year’s Korean Open, will also be making his The Open debut alongside Kim Biao and Kang Kyung-Nam.

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