Golf ace Rory McIlroy has welcomed talk of staging the US Professional Golf Association (PGA) Championship outside the United States, with the Royal Portrush course in Northern Ireland emerging as a possible venue.
'I've spoken to Ted (Bishop, US PGA president) and to people at the PGA about this - they approached me a few months ago and I'd be all for it,' McIlroy told reporters in Dubai this week after his second round at the DP World Tour Championship.
'It's quite a long way down the road, 10 years or so, maybe a bit more, but I'd love to be able to play a major championship at home.'
The PGA of America recently confirmed that it is examining the prospect of staging the event outside the United States and, according to Yahoo Sports, the Royal Portrush has emerged as a strong contender.
'Royal Portrush would be a great first international major,' Bishop told the Golf Channel this week.
'I think given the powerful effect that Irish golfers have on the professional game today, that might be a good place to start.'
Northern Ireland has not hosted a major golf championship since The British Open was held there in 1951 and McIlroy, the world number six, is certain it would have no problems in staging the event.
'Having the Irish Open there at Portrush made a huge impact, I think everyone saw how well it was supported so if they had 5-10 years to prepare it could be massive,' McIlroy said.
The 24-year-old, who became the US PGA champion in 2012, also believes that moving the tournament around the world would be good for the sport.
'The U.S. Open, British Open Championship and U.S. Masters can't really go elsewhere,' added McIlroy. But if they're thinking of moving the PGA around a little bit I think it's a great thing for the growth of the game globally.'
No Irish Need Apply? Not anymore