Muirfield members still not McIlroy's cup of tea

Muirfield members still not McIlroy's cup of tea

Muirfield finally voted to allow female members, but that has done little to endear the club's regulars to 2014 Open champion Rory McIlroy.

Rory McIlroy is in no rush to share a cup of tea with the members of Muirfield, labelling the level of opposition to women joining the club as "horrendous".

On Tuesday, Muirfield was cleared to host The Open once again after voting to admit women members for the first time, having been told it would not be considered last year after a ballot to overturn a ban was rejected.

Four-time major champion McIlroy was heavily critical of that initial vote and backed the R&A's decision to take the Scottish course off its Open rota.

Speaking at a news conference ahead of the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the Northern Irishman welcomed the decision of the latest ballot, which saw 498 of 621 voters back the inclusion of women members.

Yet when he was asked if it was still "obscene" that 20 per cent of Muirfield's members remained in opposition to women joining the club, McIlroy added: "Yeah, I know, exactly.

"It's horrendous. I mean, I just don't get it. Look, we'll go back there for The Open Championship at some point and I won't be having many cups of tea with the members afterwards."

McIlroy had earlier expressed dismay that a second ballot had been required.

"Muirfield wouldn't be one of my favourite Open rota courses, so no matter the decision, if it had been kept off The Open Championship rota, I wouldn't have been that unhappy," he explained.

"Obviously, I was outspoken about this before whenever the vote went the first time around. In this day and age, where you've got women that are like the leaders of certain industries and women that are heads of state and not able to join a golf course? I mean, it's obscene. It's ridiculous.

"So they sort of saw sense. I still think that [the fact] it got to this stage is horrendous. I mean we'll go back and we'll play The Open Championship because they will let women members in, but every time I go to Muirfield now I won't have a great taste in my mouth."

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