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Rory McIlroy seeking strong finish to season
November 17, 2010

Rory McIlroy is focused on ending his season with a first European Tour victory of the year after admitting his relief at opting to quit the U.S. PGA Tour to stay closer to his Northern Ireland roots.

Last week, the world number 10 announced he would not renew membership of the premier U.S. circuit for 2011, citing in part, boredom and missing the comforts of being home and competing in Europe.

It was a decision the 21-year old had been contemplating for some months but now he has made the move, McIlroy’s looking to end the year with success at either this week’s Hong Kong Open or the season-ending Dubai World Championship.

McIroy registered his only win this year at the PGA Tour’s Quail Hollow Championship and despite a quintet of top-five finishes on the European Tour, his only success on his home circuit remains last year’s Dubai Desert Classic.

“It’s been a good 12 months but then I’ve had my ups and downs,” he told reporters on Tuesday ahead of this week’s $2.5 million Hong Kong Open.

“I’ve thrown in some really good golf and I’ve also had some pretty average weeks, as well.

“But overall this year hasn’t been as successful as I wanted it to be, but you can’t have it all your own way,” he added.

“If you had of asked me this time last year where I wanted to be, I would have like to have had a couple more wins.

“I felt as though I played good enough to have a couple more wins but that’s the way golf goes sometimes, and hopefully I will be able to get my first European Tour win this week in Hong Kong.”

McIlroy said his experience as a full-time competitor in the United States helped in his personal development.

“I found out a lot about myself and why I was playing and what makes you happy and what makes you want to play golf,” he said.

“I found out the places I like to go to has a lot to do with it, and also there’s no point playing a golf tournament where you don’t want to be at.

“All year, I was trying to really pick and choose my events where I felt I could be happy in the places I was.

“But in announcing I was quitting the U.S. Tour, I didn’t think it would have been such a big deal but then with Lee Westwood not going and Martin (Kaymer) still undecided, I can see how it could create a bit of a stir.

“But at the end of the day, you have to make yourself happy.

“You have to look after number one. You have to spend more time at home and besides, spending more time playing in Europe will definitely make me a lot happier.”

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