Graeme McDowell says he's proud Irish and Protestant


Graeme McDowell has addressed the issue of whether he is Irish or British, which has become a big talking point after his U.S. Open victory.

Here is what he said a few days ago.

(If you are more confused than ever join the club.)

"Mum's a Catholic, Dad's a Protestant, I was brought up Presbyterian but ... I'm Irish.

"Yes, I sit on the fence but why not? There's no right or wrong answer. I'm always going to upset someone, so why not sit on the fence?" he is quoted as saying on CBS sports.

Fair answer but it is a story that bedevils every Northern Ireland sportsman and even some from the south.

Barry McGuigan was as Irish as could be from Monaghan in the Irish Republic but hilariously often appeared at fights with a United Nation flag.

McDowell's Northern Irish teammate Rory McIlroy was born a Catholic but carries a British passport.

And so it goes.

McDowell is just the latest to have to negotiate those choppy waters of identity and background.

I wish him luck.

To those who say it doesn't matter just consider the 30 year war recently concluded in Northern Ireland. Idenity was at the heart of it.

So McDowell is doing the right thing.

Originally published in 2010.


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