McIlroy Replaces Armstrong As The Face Of Nike Under 10-Year Deal

Category: Sports / Jan 14, 2013 3:35PM EDT
World number one golfer Rory McIlroy praised the clubs of his new sponsor Nike in Abu Dhabi, UAE on Monday (January 14) after agreeing to a multi-year sponsorship deal with the U.S. sportswear firm. Although commercial terms were not disclosed, media reports say the agreement with McIlroy is worth as much as $250 million over 10 years - one of the most lucrative in global sports - as Nike moves on after dropping disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong last year. 23 year-old McIlroy was previously sponsored by golf brand Titleist. The U.S. PGA champion visited Nike's research and development facility in Fort Worth, Texas, in late 2012 to try out his new clubs and ball. He said the sponsorship deal was about improving his game rather than the money. "I'm world number one which I've always dreamed of being. I feel like this is a company which can help me sustain that and win even more majors, so I play for titles, I don't play for money," he said. The twice major winner topped the tournament earnings lists in both the United States and Europe last year. Nike is also a long-time sponsor of world number two Tiger Woods, standing by the U.S. golfer in 2009 despite the bad publicity he suffered after a series of public extra-marital affairs.