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Rory McIlroy to focus on European Tour rather than PGA

Rory McIlroy

The best of McIlroy's record round at the Open

Rory McIlroy is returning to the European Tour rather than play on the PGA Tour in the United States.

Ranked ninth in the world, the 21-year-old from Northern Ireland says his part in Europe's victorious Ryder Cup team in October helped make his decision.

"There was camaraderie out there and I got to know the European guys better," he told BBC Radio 5 live.

"If you're not playing well in the United States then it can be lonely, but over here you have your mates."

He added: "I found myself thinking during the play-offs for FedEx Cup, not wanting to be there. I switched on the Golf Channel and watched the event in Switzerland and felt I wanted to be there.


"I'll still play 11 or 12 tournaments out there, but not as a member."

McIlroy took out PGA membership last year and landed his first American title in May 2010 when he beat Phil Mickelson by four strokes to land the Quail Hollow Championship.

But the Holywood-born player, who as a rookie helped Europe to a 14½-13½ win over the US in this year's Ryder Cup, said the reduction in his schedule next season would benefit him.

"If I play 22 or 23 events I know I'll be fresh and ready for all of them, instead of playing 30 and maybe in 10 of them just showing up."

McIlroy admitted he wanted to be nearer his girlfriend Holly and enjoyed his family life at home.

"Holly has another two years at university and we have two dogs, a nice house and I love my life back in Ireland. I don't ever want to give that up."

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see also
McIlroy ready for Ryder Cup debut
21 Sep 10 |  Golf
First win felt great - McIlroy
03 Oct 10 |  Golf
Inside Sport: Rory McIlroy
27 Nov 07 |  Golf
Around with Rory McIlroy
09 Nov 07 |  Season Ticket
Golf on the BBC
01 Jul 11 |  Golf

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