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McIlroy praises Stenson’s Claret Jug win

(Photo by Getty Images)

(Photo by Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy feels Henrik Stenson’s hard work and dedication means he deserved to win the Open Championship on Sunday.

Stenson held off the challenge of US veteran Phil Mickelson to lift the Claret Jug for the first time with an incredible 20-under-par score at Royal Troon.

The Swede has had to wait a long time to win his first major after a dip in form saw him slip off the radar a few years ago.

But the Ryder Cup star has put in hours of practice on his swing and other aspects of his game to land the sport’s ultimate prize.

The Scandinavian has been roundly praised for his final-round 63 in Scotland and McIlroy echoed the words of his peers who felt Stenson was a worthy winner.

“It was such a popular win because we know how hard he works and some of the battles that he has had to go through in his career,” said the Northern Irishman. “So to come out the other end and get that major is really well deserved.”

England’s Justin Rose echoed McIlroy’s words, saying: “It’s so great to see him win. We have obviously given him plenty of banter over the last couple of years for not being a major champion – so Henrik couldn’t be more deserving.”

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