World number one golfer Rory McIlroy may opt to take a neutral back seat and avoid competing at the 2016 Olympic Games amid controversy over which country to represent. McIlroy (23) admitted he might opt out of playing altogether at Rio de Janeiro as he mulls over whether to declare to play for Britain or Ireland. “I just think being from where we’re from, we’re placed in a very difficult position. I feel Northern Irish and obviously being from Northern Ireland, you have a connection to Ireland and a connection to the UK,” McIlroy said. The Co Down golfer said in a BBC documentary that he was enduring an uncomfortable battle of conscience.
Rory made the error of saying he would like to play for Team GB in the 2016 Olympics. This was immediately seized on by Nationalists and he was forced to back track. Now he is in a position where he has to sit on the fence lest one side or the other be offended. It’s a shame. The truth is that any public/Sporting figure who comes from Northern Ireland and declares loyalty to the United Kingdom is instantly attacked by small minded intolerant Irish nationalists. Parity of esteem means NOT saying you are British f you come from Northern Ireland.