Lowry wants to do well on home turf

Shane Lowry. Photo: Getty Images

Brian Keogh

Shane Lowry will be looking to kick-start his season when he tees it up with South Africa's George Coetzee and Australian Lucas Herbert in the first two rounds of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open at Galgorm Castle.

The world No 30 is the highest-ranked player in a 120-strong field missing defending champion Jon Rahm and fellow Ryder Cup stars Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell, who have opted to remain in the US.

The 2009 champion will be looking to feed off recent Portugal Masters winner Coetzee and Omega Dubai Desert Classic winner Herbert, insisting he was heading home "to do well" after finishing tied-43rd in the US Open at Winged Foot on Sunday.

Three-time Major champion Pádraig Harrington will make his first start since March alongside Andalucia Masters winner John Catlin of the United States and the in-form South African Justin Harding.

Mallow's James Sugrue, who is one of three Irish amateurs in the field, makes his Irish Open debut alongside 2015 champion Søren Kjeldsen and England's Laurie Canter.

Kilkenny's Mark Power (20) partners Scotland's Daniel Young and Spain's Alejandro Cañizares as Holywood's Tom McKibbin (17) joins Sweden's Sebastian Soderberg and Australia's Scott Hend.

The event will be played behind closed doors due to the Covid-19 pandemic but with the prize fund reduced from $7 million to €1.25m and winner taking home €199,750 compared to €1,166,660 at Lahinch, it does not have Rolex Series status.

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