Major Golf Champion Rory McIlroy has confirmed he intends to play for the Ireland Golf Team at the Olympic Games in Rio in 2016.
McIlroy, who was born in Northern Ireland on 4 May 1989, was eligible to play for the Great Britain or Ireland Golf Team.
The 25 year-old has played amateur golf played on all-island basis in Ireland and represented Ireland professionally in Golf World Cups.
“I have been thinking about the decision a lot and remembered all the times I represented Ireland as an amateur,” he said on Wednesday.
McIlroy revealed his decision on the eve of the 2014 Irish Open, which is being played at Fota Island in County Cork.
The golfer, from Holywood in County Down, has on two occasions played in the World Cup for Ireland – both times alongside fellow Northern Irishman Graeme McDowell.
He is one of the biggest stars in the sport and won the US Open in 2011 and the 2012 US PGA Championship a golf season later.
More recently, McIlroy has won the 2014 BMW PGA Championship at the Wentworth Club, the flagship tournament of the European Tour.
Golf is being played at the Olympics for the first time since 1904.