Hawaii opening for McIlroy's shot at the majors
Rory McIlroy will look to make a statement for 2019 when he makes his debut in next week's Sentry Tournament of Champions.
The 29-year-old qualified for the restricted-field event by winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational by three strokes back in March and will line up with the other players who triumphed on the PGA Tour last season.
The Northern Irishman has been eligible to play in the Hawaii event many times before but has always opted not to travel, choosing instead to open his campaign on the European Tour’s desert swing.
However, with one eye on the majors, McIlroy has altered his schedule and will play fewer European Tour events next year to try and improve his chances of winning one of the big four for the first time since 2014.
There was talk that the four-time major winner was set to give up his membership of the European Tour for one year but he has since been persuaded to play the minimum number of events to stay on board.
Tiger Woods will not feature next week while world number two Justin Rose is also enjoying an extended break over the festive period, but the likes of Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau and Justin Thomas will all tee it up on Maui.
Neil Foster is an experienced journalist who specialises in cricket and rugby union. Neil also has a solid knowledge of tennis, golf and football.