Four-time Major champion Rory McIlroy bested the inclement weather conditions and a fiercely competitive field to win the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, hosted by The Rory Foundation, and claim his first victory of the season.
Cheered by passionate Irish fans at the famed K Club in County Kildare, McIlroy secured the win on the final three holes. Standing with a one-shot deficit on the par-five 16th hole, he fired an awe-inspiring shot with a Nike Vapor Speed fairway metal from 271 yards to the green, walking off with a two-putt birdie. A par four followed before a precise 253-yard approach to the par-five 18th nestled two feet from the cup. McIlroy holed out for eagle to win the tournament by three strokes.
“I don’t know if I can put it into words,” McIlroy declares. “As you’ve seen over the years, I don’t really get emotional when I win but I was trying to hold back the tears there on the 18th green. I looked up, saw all my friends and family, and to win in front of them — I don’t get a chance to play in front of my home fans very often — so to play like that and to finish like that… I’ll never forget it.”
The Northern Irishman was outfitted head to toe in Nike Golf apparel, footwear and equipment. His work off the tee with the Nike Vapor Fly Pro driver was impressive all week, averaging 293 yards in distance. He also finished top in greens in regulation.
McIlroy relied on the stability offered by the RZN Tour Platinum golf ball as he tackled the wind and the rain. Four key technologies — RZN 4.0, Speedlock X Core, Speedlock Mantle and Flight Suit Cover — combine to offer added yardage and a softer feel, versus the previous RZN Platinum ball.
The tournament was hosted by The Rory Foundation, a non-profit charitable trust that seeks to advance opportunity and lasting change for children suffering from ill health, who are unfairly disadvantaged or vulnerable to life’s circumstances. McIlroy will be donating his winner’s prize fund to the foundation.
“The ovation I got when the ball landed on the 16th green sent shivers down my spine. It’s just incredible to play in front of these crowds; they’re so knowledgeable about their golf and, come rain or shine, they come out in droves to support. For everyone who is watching at home and everyone who is here, thank you for supporting this event. It means an awful lot to the players, but it means an awful lot to everyone else and buying a ticket this week goes a long way to helping children who really need it,” McIlroy adds.
MCILROY’S NIKE GOLF EQUIPMENT
- Driver: Nike Vapor Fly Pro 9.5-degree
- Fairway Wood: Nike Vapor Speed 3-wood 15-degree, 5-wood 19-degree
- Irons: Nike VR Pro Blade (4-9)
- Wedges: Nike Engage 47-degree square sole, 52-degree, 56-degree, 59-degree dual sole
- Putter: Nike Method Origin B2-01
- Ball: Nike RZN Tour Platinum
- Apparel: Nike Performance
- Footwear: Nike Lunar Control 4
Nippon Shaft Wins AT&T Byron Nelson Classic
CARLSBAD, Calif. – Spain’s longtime Ryder Cup stalwart used Nippon Shaft’s N.S. PRO MODUS³ Tour 130 X-flex shafts in his irons and wedges en route to a playoff victory Sunday(May 22) at the AT&T Byron Nelson Championship at TPC Four Seasons in Irving, Texas.
The 36-year-old native of Castellon won with a par on the first hole of sudden death, after his 15-under par in regulation on rounds of 63-66-68-68—265, playing his first 44 holes bogey-free. The victory was his ninth on the PGA TOUR, tying him with countryman Seve Ballesteros, and paid $1,314,000. It was his second time winning the Nelson.
“Nippon Shaft would like to congratulate the 2016 Byron Nelson champion, who is known as one of the game’s top iron players,” said Hiro Fukuda, sales and marketing for Nippon Shaft. “He has been playing Nippon Shaft for several years, and our company is honored that a player now ranked No. 12 in the world continues to entrust his game with Nippon Shaft products.”
He currently is ranked fifth in Ryder Cup points. He hits 71.89 percent of his greens in regulation, third-best on the PGA TOUR.
Nippon Shaft’s popularity on the world’s major golf tours grew significantly in 2015, with 106 players on the PGA and European Tours combined utilizing steel shafts built by the Japan-based golf shaft manufacturer, an increase of over 50 percent compared to the prior year when 70 major Tour pros used Nippon Shaft.
“Nippon Shaft is proud and gratified that its product penetration continues to experience meaningful growth year after year on the world’s major men’s golf tours,” said Fukuda.
In the 2014-15 season, Nippon Shaft players won 16 times on the world’s top tours, including the PGA TOUR, European Tour, Web.com Tour, Challenge Tour and the LPGA Tour.
Seven of the 30 contestants in the PGA TOUR’s TOUR Championship used Nippon Shaft steel shafts in their irons and/or wedges.
The iron shaft models used by golf’s elite players were the N.S. PRO 950GH, the N.S. PRO MODUS³ Tour 130, N.S. PRO MODUS³ Tour 120, N.S. PRO MODUS³ TOUR 105 shaft, and N.S. PRO MODUS³ PROTOTYPE ORA steel shafts.
In addition, more than 70 players used Nippon Shaft N.S. PRO MODUS³ WEDGE shafts, which were designed exclusively for wedges, utilizing unique technologies that contribute to high levels of stability and feel in the short game. The WEDGE shafts were released to the public in March of 2015.
Meanwhile, Nippon Shaft continues to be the preferred shaft on the LPGA Tour, with several players having recorded victories on the world’s predominant women’s tour.
Over the years, Nippon Shaft recorded hundreds of victories on professional golf tours worldwide, as the best players in the world increasingly chose to install in their irons steel shafts manufactured in Japan to unparalleled quality standards.
Nippon Shaft products are available globally either as stock or custom shafts in many of the world’s top iron brands. In addition, Nippon Shaft products are available through Nippon Shaft’s dedicated global club fitter network. Details of these can be found at www.nipponshaft.com
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One week before each of the events, one person will be chosen from all entrants to pick the golfer whom they think will win the event and their total score. If they choose the correct winner, they win $5,000; and if they guess that golfer’s cumulative score over four days (e.g. 279), they win $250,000. If no one wins, the $250,000 rolls to the next event. How do you improve your chances of being chosen to guess the winning players? Golfers can refer a friend to enter the promotion or download the GAME GOLF app to receive additional entries.
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