Irish Open Golf: Graeme McDowell looks forward to Lahinch return

Graeme McDowell during the final round of the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship which he won
Graeme McDowell during the final round of the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship which he won

Major champion Graeme McDowell will be targeting a second win of the 2019 season when he returns to the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open this July, after the Northern Irishman claimed his first international title in four years last week.

The 2010 U.S. Open Champion is a popular figure on Irish soil and is sure to receive a hero’s welcome from the home fans at the second Rolex Series event of the year, following his 15th professional victory in the Dominican Republic on Sunday on the US PGA Tour.

He joins 2018 Ryder Cup star Tommy Fleetwood, former World Number One Lee Westwood and fellow Major winners Louis Oosthuizen and Danny Willett, amongst others, in what is shaping up to be a world-class field for the July showpiece.

McDowell will return to the majestic County Clare links 19 years after winning there as an amateur in the South of Ireland Championship.

McDowell, a 10-time European Tour winner and three-time Ryder Cup winner for Europe – including winning three points from three matches under McGinley in the 2014 victory - has been an ever-present at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open since his debut European Tour season in 2002.

“I think this year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is going to be a really special one,” McDowell said. “It’s obviously a tournament which I prioritise on my schedule every year, but Lahinch Golf Club and the town of Lahinch are really going to provide a unique experience for the players and the fans.

“The Irish golf fans are some of the best in the world, and with The Open Championship two weeks later in Portrush, it’s sure to be an incredible few weeks.

“After my win last week in the Dominican Republic, I’m feeling really confident about the summer ahead and hopefully I can bring my A-game to Lahinch.”

A world-class field is now coming together for the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, which is expected to provide a festival atmosphere and fan experience like no other, with the popular tourist village of Lahinch right on the doorstep of the famous links course.

Last year’s event attracted 94,239 spectators to Ballyliffin Golf Club, where Russell Knox dramatically secured his first Rolex Series title with a play-off victory against Ryan Fox.

Scotsman Knox holed an incredible 40-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole to force a play-off against the New Zealander and then sank an almost identical putt on the first extra hole to clinch victory.

Tickets for the 2019 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open are on sale at www.dubaidutyfreeirishopen.com and begin at €23 for Pro-Am Wednesday, with single tickets for Thursday or Friday costing €30 and day tickets for each weekend day costing €35 each. An adult season ticket, which covers five days of world-class golf from Wednesday to Sunday, begins at a special price of just €110.

Children under 12 years of age are entitled to free entry when accompanied by an adult, day junior tickets for those between 12 and 17 years of age are €10 (€30 for a season ticket) while those aged between 18 and 21, as well as students with valid student cards and over 60s, can avail of a concession ticket - €20 for a day (€80 for a season).

The only official sales channel to purchase tickets for this year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is via the ticketing platform Eventbrite. The resale of Dubai Duty Free Irish Open tickets on unofficial platforms contravenes the European Tour’s ticket terms and conditions and such sales render the ticket void.