Olympic gold medalist Justin Rose confirmed for Irish Open

The Dubai Duty Free Irish Open hosted by the Rory Foundation at Portstewart Golf Club from July 6-9

BY Cian Roche 16:35 Monday 24 April 2017, 16:35 24 Apr 2017

Image: Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS/ABACAPRESS.COM

Olympic gold medalist and 2013 US Open winner Justin Rose will compete at this summer's Dubai Duty Free Irish Open hosted by the Rory Foundation.

The event, which takes place at Portstewart Golf Club from July 6-9, is part of the new Rolex Series introduced by the European Tour.

Rose returns to challenge for the title for the first time in seven years.

"With Rory’s involvement the last couple of years the event has gone from strength to strength and being part of the Rolex Series will give it an even bigger boost," he said in a statement on Monday afternoon.

"Irish fans are always a lot of fun to play in front of, it’s always good 'craic' out there! We’ll all enjoy the tournament and it’s obviously great preparation for The Open Championship too.

"It’s very good to get some links golf under your belt before The Open. Playing the Scottish Open the week before is a great idea and also playing two weeks before is great because you can have a week before to fine tune."

The event is set to attract a number of big name golfers, partly due to the increased prize fund of $7 million (€6.5million).

The increase represents an additional €2.3 million on top of last year's fund.

"The fact that we have these options running into The Open is fantastic and they are top quality events which will hopefully attract not just the top European players, but maybe some players from across the pond in the USA as well."

Rory McIlroy after winning the DDF Irish Open last year at The K Club. Image: ©INPHO/Donall Farmer 

The Rory Foundation

Current Irish Open champion McIlroy also recently named 'Sport Changes Life' as the primary beneficiary charity for this year's event.

The UK registered and US non-profit organisation works in disadvantaged communities in Northern Ireland to "help young people find a path to a brighter future with the help of international student-athletes, the Victory Scholars."

Since 2015, McIlroy has hosted the event with his foundation and has attracted a number of big stars to compete including last year's Masters champion, Danny Willett and two-time major winner, Martin Kaymer.

Irish natives including four-time major winner Padraig Harrington and former Ryder Cup captain, Paul McGinley also competed in last year's event.

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