Harrington and Lowry looking forward to Irish Open
 Shane Lowry. Picture: Getty

Shane Lowry. Picture: Getty

Former champions Padraig Harrington and Shane Lowry will join host and defending champion Rory McIlroy at Portstewart for the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open hosted by the Rory Foundation from July 6-9.

The past fortnight has been a significant one for both Harrington and Lowry, albeit for very different reasons.

Harrington took the decision to undergo surgery on his neck this week so he will be fit for the summer and trips to Portstewart and Royal Birkdale for The Open, where he successfully defended the Claret Jug in 2008.

Lowry became a father for the first time two weeks ago when his wife, Wendy, gave birth to a baby girl, Iris.

And both players will be hoping those major developments away from the golf course will provide the springboard for big things to come when the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, the third Rolex Series event of the season, returns to Northern Irish shores and another links venue.

With the 18th grandstand tickets for Sunday recently selling out, 300 seats were added last week to cope with demand, and all tournament tickets including season passes and day tickets can be purchased at www.dubaidutyfreeirishopen.com.

“The Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is always one of the first events I put on my schedule every year and I am really looking forward to playing another classic links golf course in Portstewart in July,” said Harrington, who began his run of three major wins in 13 months by winning the 2007 Irish Open at Adare Manor.

Hoping to be fully fit in June after an expected nine-week layoff to recovery from his neck surgery, Harrington said: “Winning the Irish Open will always be up there with the Major Championship victories as one of the biggest moments of my career and with the event now part of the Rolex Series, it should be a great tournament.”

Lowry said: “The Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is always such a special occasion with phenomenal crowds so I know it will be another incredible week at Portstewart in July. Having won at Baltray, I love playing the Irish Open on links courses.

“The tournament has such a good date two weeks before the Open, and with the event now part of the Rolex Series, we will definitely have a world-class field.

“Obviously my life has changed recently with the arrival of Iris, and hopefully the happiness she brings off the course will help me to play better golf and make a really good run of it over the next few months because I have some of my favourite tournaments of the year to look forward to.”

 Pádraig Harrington. Picture: Getty

Pádraig Harrington. Picture: Getty

Tickets for the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open hosted by the Rory Foundation are on sale at www.dubaidutyfreeirishopen.com, and begin at £20 for Pro-Am Wednesday, with tickets for Thursday and Friday costing £40 and day tickets for the weekend costing £45.

An adult season souvenir ticket, which covers five days of world class golf from Wednesday to Sunday, costs just £100 (a saving of £90 over the course of the five days).

Concessions are available for customers aged over 60 and between 16 and 21, while children up to 16 are permitted free entry when accompanied by a ticket-holding adult.

To get a full seated view of all of the drama at the 18th green, grandstand tickets cost an additional £11.50 for Thursday and Friday, £16.50 for Saturday and £21.50 for Sunday.

Official Hospitality packages are also available on the ticketing page, or alternatively contact the European Tour’s dedicated Hospitality Sales Team, who will be happy to answer any queries and discuss the various hospitality options, on enquiries@europeantourhospitality.com or +44 (0) 1344 840681.