Niall gibbons web

Rory's success spurs campaign

Ireland is known the world over as a major golf destination but tourism chiefs are hoping for even more golf visitors as a result of the Rory McIlroy phenomenon.

Tourism Ireland has announced a €2.2m campaign aimed at building on McIlroy's U.S. Open victory at Congressional last month. the win spurred global media interest, not just in McIlroy himself but Irish golf suvvess in recent years and Ireland as a golfing destination.

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The camoaign will be focused primarily on the U.S. and UK and will, according to a report in the Cork-published Irish Examiner, includes advertising in golf and business publications as well as publications serving the Irish emigrant communities.

"Rory McIlroy became a global sports star following his spectacular victory in the U.S. Open. Ireland also cemented its reputation as the home of great golfers, and great golf courses," Irish government minister Leo Varadkar said.

"This golf tourism campaign is the ideal way to build on that success in the run-up to the Irish Open. We can promote our fantastic golfing talent and boost our tourism industry in the process," he said.

Tourism Ireland chief executive, Niall Gibbons, pointed out that golf was the world's largest sports-related travel market.

McIlroy, along with fellow golf major winners Padraig Harrington and Graeme McDowell are lined up to play in the Irish Open in Killarney at the end of the month.