Rory McIlroy has hinted that he will represent Team GB at the next Olympics, with the champion golfer admitting he feels more like a British citizen than an Irish one.
After winning the JK Wadley Trophy and the BMW Championship Trophy over the last week, and staking his claim on the world no. 1 mantle, McIlroy is in fine form and will look to be favourite to take out Gold when golf is reintroduced as an Olympic sport in Rio for the first time since 1904.
While McIlroy has represented Ireland at the World Cup before, with the Northern Irishman joining up with the Republic for the tournaments in the past, the 23 year old says he feels a greater affinity to Team GB.
"What makes it such an awful position to be in is I have grown up my whole life playing for Ireland under the Golfing Union of Ireland umbrella," he told the Daily Mail.
"But the fact is, I've always felt more British than Irish.
'Maybe it was the way I was brought up, I don't know, but I have always felt more of a connection with the UK than with Ireland.
"And so I have to weigh that up against the fact that I've always played for Ireland and so it is tough.
"Whatever I do, I know my decision is going to upset some people but I just hope the vast majority will understand."
For McIlroy, the choice will be made all the more difficult by the fact that he could possibly oust a British competitor by making his decision to play for Team GB, with Luke Donald, Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood and Justin Rose also competing for places.
While the Olympics will no doubt represent a conundrum for McILroy, the golfer insists that collecting majors will always be a priority for him as he looks to one day step out from Tiger Woods' shadows as one of the greatest in the sport's history.
"Obviously the majors are the ultimate thing for me, it is how you measure yourself against the greats of the past, but the Ryder Cup two years ago certainly opened my eyes," he explained.
McIlroy continued on his triumphs this week: "What makes it such an amazing week is that everyone from the players to the spectators are all part of it, they all have a role to play in whether you win or lose.
"This will be my first one in the States, so it is going to be unusual having the majority of the crowd rooting against me. That will be different. How do I see my role in the team room? It's a little tricky.
"Two years ago, of course, I was just a rookie and listened to everybody. In a way I am still a rookie. I'm only 23 and I'll be surrounded by great players who have played in a lot more Ryder Cups than myself.
"But the rankings say I am the best player at the moment and so that brings a responsibility. I still don't see myself as a leader but I will definitely speak up a lot more if I feel there's something I can offer."
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