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Mon 5 Mar 2012 06:40 PM

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Jumeirah-backed McIlroy secures world’s No.1 spot

Irishman replaces Luke Donald at the top of world rankings to become second youngest ever

Jumeirah-backed McIlroy secures world’s No.1 spot
Rory McIlroy (Getty Images)

Dubai-sponsored Rory McIlroy has secured the world’s No 1 golf ranking after winning the Honda Classic in Florida.

The 22-year old, who has been sponsored by the Jumeirah Group for five years, replaced Luke Donald at the top of the world rankings after his victory at the PGA National course.

The Irishman closed with a 1-under-par 69 to finish at 12-under 268.

McIlroy, winner of last year’s US Open, is the second youngest world No.1 after Tiger Woods who won the accolade at 21-years old.

“This is an amazing achievement for Rory, which we have always believed was coming – it was just a matter of time. As principal sponsor, we congratulate Rory on his new number 1 world ranking,” Gerald Lawless, executive chairman of the Jumeirah Group said in a statement.

“He is truly an inspiration to us and golf enthusiasts around the world, and we are immensely proud of him as our global brand ambassador,” he added.

Jumeirah signed McIlroy as a brand ambassador in 2007, the year he turned professional. The hotel operator extended the deal for a further three years in 2010. McIlroy, who is also sponsored by Oakley sunglasses and Titleist, reportedly earns $10m a year from his primary sponsors.

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