by Renee Israel
This year the Irish Open returns to the Royal Portrush Golf Club on the 28th
June until 1st July, for the first time since 1947. In fact this important event
on the European Tour was last hosted in Northern Ireland in 1953. The
Irish Open golf tournament has increased its visibility since last
year, when local hero Rory McIlroy became the youngest US Open champion since
Rory McIlroy at the 2012 Irish Open
McIlroy has been having a torrid time of late. He has even missed making the
cut in four of the last five events he played. In the recently concluded 2012 US
Open he finished 10 over and two shots adrift of the cut. However McIlroy claims
that he has not been playing badly and is just one tournament away from
regaining the magic that propelled him to the number one spot in the rankings
earlier this year, a place he was not able to hold on for long.
McIlroy said, "It hasn't been the greatest run over the last sort of six
weeks or whatever it is; but as I said, I still see enough good stuff in the
rounds that it does give me hope that it's not very far away." McIlroy is hoping
to get back into business at the Irish Open, before the more prestigious British
Open next month.
McIlroy is getting all the support and encouragement from his girlfriend,
tennis star Caroline Wozniacki. Caroline will not be present at the Irish Open
because Wimbledon has already started and she too hopes to regain the top spot
in her field. Caroline said that she was in touch with McIlroy and he was
satisfied with the way his preparations were shaping up. He is expected to come
to Wimbledon after the Irish Open is over to cheer Caroline.
Odds and Contenders at 2012 Irish Open
The online betting site Bet365 is one of the UK sports books that have posted
odds for the 2012 Irish Open golf tournament. McIlroy has the shortest odds of
6/1, but it is not going to be a cakewalk. There will be at least seven former
major winners at the Portrush golf course.
Leading the challenge will be compatriot Graeme McDowell. McDowell was the
winner of the US Open in 2010. He said that he grew up playing golf at the Royal
Portrush and playing in an Irish Open at this venue is fulfilling a childhood
dream. Bet365 online offers odds of 10/1 on McDowell winning the tournament.
The odds for the other top contenders at Bet365 online are as follows.
Padraig Harrington 11/1
Ross Fisher 16/1
Nicolas Colsaerts 25/1