Rory McIlroy targets historic fourth victory at 2024 Dubai Desert Classic

North Irishman defeated Patrick Reed by one shot to win this year's tournament at Emirates Golf Club

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Rory McIlroy is returning to defend his Hero Dubai Desert Classic crown next year when he will target a historic fourth title.

Ryder Cup hero Mcllroy is set to headline a world-class field at the first Rolex Series event of the 2024 Race to Dubai at the Emirates Golf Club from January 18-24.

Dubai is a happy-hunting ground for the 34-year-old Northern Irishman, who earned his first European Tour title at the event in 2009, before claiming his second and third Desert Classic trophies 2015 and 2023 – matching the record of Ernie Els when he edged out American Patrick Reed on a dramatic final day over the Majlis Course in January.

The four-time major winner went on to add a second Rolex Series title at the Scottish Open in July, and once again leads the Race to Dubai as he aims to top the season-long rankings for a fifth time.

“It meant a lot to lift the Dallah Trophy for a third time,” said McIlroy. “I’ve enjoyed a lot of success at the Hero Dubai Desert Classic over the years, so adding another title was the perfect way to start the year.

“I love coming to Dubai and the support we get from fans is always special. I look forward to getting back to Emirates Golf Club in January, and hopefully creating a bit of history.”

McIlroy has just played a key role in Europe regaining the Ryder Cup from the United States when Luke Donald's team triumphed 16½-11½ at the Marco Simone Golf Club near Rome earlier this month.

The Northern Irishman delivered his best Ryder Cup return of four points, two years on from breaking down in tears when Europe were humbled 19-9 by the Americans at Whistling Straits.

Smon Corkill, Executive Tournament Director of Hero Dubai Desert Classic, said: “We are delighted to confirm Rory will return to defend his title and will be striving for a historic fourth win.

“Our Roll of Honour features an illustrious cast of golf’s most notable names, and I am sure we will have a worthy champion to join this star-studded list and lift the Dallah Trophy in January.”

Fans can register now to claim their free general admission tickets and limited special offer early bird hospitality tickets for the Dallah Lounge terraces, with more information available at www.dubaidesertclassic.com.

Updated: October 18, 2023, 9:15 AM