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Royal Portrush ‘leading the race’ to host Open Championship in 2025

Portrush Open

The 2019 championship at Portrush was a major success.

Royal Portrush is the frontrunner to host the Open Championship in 2025 after its successful staging of golf’s oldest major in 2019, according to reports.

The Open returned to the Dunluce Links for the first time in 68 years in 2019 with Ireland’s Shane Lowry capturing the Claret Jug after a glorious week on the north coast.

According to The Guardian, ‘background talks’ are proceeding positively, and while no formal agreement has been reached, it seems likely that Portrush will preside over the Open in 2025.

Portrush Open

This year’s championship, postponed from last year due to the pandemic, is to be held at Royal St George’s. Next year is the 150th staging of the championship with St Andrews as the host, while Royal Liverpool and Royal Troon will host in 2023 and 2024 respectively.

As per the Guardian’s report, the R&A always envisaged Portrush hosting the Open twice in the space of a decade after its return in 2019.

Some 237,750 people turned up to watch Lowry seal his maiden major triumph, a record-breaking attendance for a championship staged outside St Andrews.

Lowry won by six shots from England’s Tommy Fleetwood with 2014 Open champion Rory McIlroy missing the cut despite a spirited back-nine surge on Friday.

Earlier this week, it was announced that 26 golf clubs in Northern Ireland have been allocated £4.2m in funding from Sport NI’s Sports Sustainability Fund.

Royal County Down, which hosted the Irish Open in 2015, received the most with £1.56m while Portrush pocketed £757,638.

Holywood, McIlroy’s home club, received £267,287 while Portstewart, which staged the Irish Open in 2017, was granted £154,957.

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