Ireland will host the International European Amateur Championship for the first time in the event’s 25-year history next year.
Some of the biggest names in the world of professional golf have captured the European Individual title on their way to global success – including current US Open champion and current World No. 2 Rory McIlroy.
The championship is one of only four on the World Amateur Golf Rankings points system with “elite” status – the other three being the Asian Amateur, British Amateur and US Amateur Championships.
Irish players have been particularly successful at the event. McIlroy’s victory in 2006 earned him a place in the 2007 Open Championship, where he shot the best round of the opening day and announced his talent to the world by going on to win the Silver Medal awarded to the leading amateur that week.
His win was the fourth Irish victory in the championship following Paddy Gribben in 1998, Stephen Browne in 2001 and Brian McElhinney in 2003.
Prominent past winners also include five-time Ryder Cup star Sergio Garcia, France’s European Tour stalwart Gregory Havret – who finished runner-up at the US Open in 2010 – and Sweden’s Carl Pettersson, who held off Graeme McDowell in 2000.
Albert Lee, Honorary Secretary of the Golfing Union of Ireland, said: “We are delighted to be selected to host the European Individual Championship and look forward to welcoming the cream of world amateur golf to Ireland next August.
“We are also thrilled that the championship will be played on the Montgomerie Course at Carton House, as I’m sure it will be both an enjoyable experience and a stern test for such an elite field.”
Stephen Dodd and Thomas Bjorn won the Irish Open over the Mongomerie Course in 2005 and 2006 respectively while Welshman Craig Smith won the 2004 Irish Amateur Open there.Written by By Brian Keogh