Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas to tee up in Abu Dhabi next month

The 2021 European Tour season is set for an exciting start after major winners Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas both confirmed their participation in the 16th edition of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship next month.

World No 4 Rory McIlroy has confirmed his participation in next month's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship along with fellow major winner Justin Thomas. Picture: Getty Images
World No 4 Rory McIlroy has confirmed his participation in next month's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship along with fellow major winner Justin Thomas. Picture: Getty Images

The 21-24 January event will mark the first Rolex Series event on the 2021 Race to Dubai, with a world-class international field set to assemble at the iconic Abu Dhabi Golf Club.

McIlroy, the world No 4, is returning to Abu Dhabi for the first time since 2018, having finished second on four occasions in his quest to lift the Falcon Trophy.

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“I’m looking forward to coming back to Abu Dhabi,” said the Northern Irishman, who will be making his first journey across the Atlantic in the Covid-19 world.

“It’s always a great event for the players and it’s the perfect place for me to start the 2021 season.

“Abu Dhabi Golf Club is a world-class golf course, one that I have come close to winning several times over the years, so hopefully I can do well again and be right up there contending come Sunday.”

World No 3 Thomas will be making his debut in the Middle East, having already supported both the Scottish Open and French Open on the European Tour in recent years.

“I’m excited to play for the first time in Abu Dhabi,” said the 2017 US PGA champion.

“I enjoy new challenges, I like playing different golf courses around the world, and competing against the best players in the game.”

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