Rory fee claims dismissed
Last updated: 14th December 2012
Golf Australia has rejected suggestions that Rory McIlroy didn't take part in the Australian Open as he wanted a bigger appearance fee.
The 23-year-old world number one skipped the event at the Lakes Golf Club in Sydney last week with some reports claiming it was because he wanted more money.
However, Golf Australia chief executive officer Stephen Pitt said in a statement: "I can confirm there was no agreement in place with Rory McIlroy or his management at any point for Rory to play in this year's Open.
"In addition to not having any agreement in place, at no stage were Golf Australia or tournament organisers advised by Rory's management that his appearance costs had increased. This simply isn't true."
World Sport Group chief operating officer Andrew Georgiou added: "We have a very good relationship with Rory and his management team and Rory has played in a number of our events.
"At no stage had Rory or his management committed to play in Australia this year, so any commentary about appearance fees is totally irrelevant and clearly inaccurate."
McIlory's Horizon Sports manager Conor Ridge thanked the two organisations for clarifying the reports and added that the Ulsterman hopes to return to Australia in the near future.
"Both Rory and Horizon Sports Management value our reputation for professionalism and integrity. Hence, when such inaccuracies are reported in the media, we have an obligation to set the record straight," he said.
"It has been five years since Rory last played in Australia, but he is very much looking forward to returning down there to play again in the near future."
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