Originally written on Fox Sports  |  Last updated 11/19/14

NEWPORT, WALES - OCTOBER 04: (L-R) Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell of Europe celebrate on the balcony of the clubhouse following Europe's victory in the 2010 Ryder Cup at the Celtic Manor Resort on October 4, 2010 in Newport, Wales. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
After the buzz of his multimillion-dollar sponsorship deal and a fight over the European Ryder Cup captain, Rory McIlroy is looking forward to actually playing some golf again. The world's top-ranked golfer and PGA Championship winner leads a star-studded field at the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship that also includes Tiger Woods, No. 5 Justin Rose, Ernie Els and Martin Kaymer. McIlroy signed a lucrative sponsorship deal with Nike this week and then led the charge to support of Paul McGinley in his successful campaign to become Europe's Ryder Cup captain for 2014. Now he's looking forward to getting his year off to a strong start at the National Course, where he has repeatedly come up short against Kaymer, a three-time winner here. ''It's a place I have done well. I think one problem for me the last few years has been Martin Kaymer. He's played really well around here and won it a couple of times, three times I think, and I always came up second best,'' said McIlroy, who is coming o...
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