Rory McIlroy has been crowned the first winner of The Race to Dubai European Tour Golfer of the Month for his performances throughout January.

The Northern Irishman has made a strong start to the season-long Race to Dubai, capped by his maiden Tour victory at the  Dubai Desert Classic ,which also moved the 19-year-old into the world’s top 50.

“It was a huge thrill to win my first European Tour title against such a high quality field and in the place where The Race to Dubai will be decided in ten months time,” said McIlroy, who kept his cool at the Dubai Desert Classic despite a nervous back nine. 

“Obviously I’d love to be back at the end of the season competing for the Dubai World Championship and the number one spot in The Race to Dubai.

“The win has given me a lot of confidence and I’ll be looking to use that to continue to improve for the rest of the year.”

McIlory became the seventh youngest player ever to win on the European Tour after his Dubai victory, and his form has been rewarded with a US Masters spot at Augusta in April.

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