McIlroy 'resents' Olympics for making him pick between Ireland and GB

McIlroy forced to question "who am I?" in lead up to golf's return to the Olympics

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Submitted by Charlie Lemay on

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy says he “resents” the Olympics for making him choose between Ireland and Great Britain in regards to who he would represent in Rio.

The four-time major champion ended up deciding to play for Ireland, before later deciding to pull out of the Games because of the Zika Virus.

"All of a sudden it put me in a position where I had to question who I am? Who am I? Where am I from? Where do my loyalties lie? Who am I going to play for? Who do I not want to piss off the most,” the four-time major champion said.

“I started to resent it and I do. I resent the Olympic Games because of the position it put me in, that's my feelings towards it, and whether that's right or wrong, it's how I feel."

McIlroy also revealed a text exchange with Justin Rose who won gold in Rio, where golf made its return to the Olympics after a 112-year hiatus.

Following a congratulatory message from McIlroy, Rose replied, “"All the boys here want to know do you feel like you missed out?"

McIlroy explained: "I said, 'Justin, if I had been on the podium (listening) to the Irish national anthem as that flag went up, or the British national anthem as that flag went up, I would have felt uncomfortable either way. I don't know the words to either of them. I don't feel a connection to either flag. I don't want it to be about flags. I've tried to stay away from that."

"Not everyone is (driven by) nationalism and patriotism and that's never been me, because I felt like I grew up in a place where I wasn't allowed to be," McIlroy said. "It was suppressed. I never wanted it to get political or about where I'm from, but that's what it turned into. And it just got to the point where it wasn't worth the hassle."