Northern Ireland

Rory McIlroy and Horizon Sports Management settle golf court case

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Media captionA joint statement, read outside court by public relations consultant Billy Murphy, said the dispute had been "settled to the satisfaction of both parties"

Rory McIlroy has settled a dispute with his former agent for what is understood to be well over $20m (£13m) plus costs.

The world's number one golfer had been suing Horizon Sports Management in a multi-million pound wrangle.

The period under dispute coincided with McIlroy's sponsorship deal with Nike, said to be worth about $100m (£66m).

In a joint statement on Wednesday, the two parties said the legal dispute had been "settled to the satisfaction of both parties".

"We wish each other well for the future. The parties will be making no further comment," the statement said.

Image caption A copy of the statement announcing the court settlement

McIlroy was not in court in Dublin when the settlement was announced, although he did appear briefly on Tuesday.

The golfer had complained that fees charged by Horizon were excessive. The Dublin firm counter-sued for outstanding fees, alleging breaches of contract.

From the Scene: Iain Carter, BBC Sport

In the briefest of hearings, McIlroy's senior counsel Paul Gallagher stated the case had been settled.

The judge, Brian Cregan, congratulated both parties wishing them success for the future.

Yesterday, there were intense talks to hammer out the deal.

Unlike yesterday, McIlroy wasn't in court, but Horizon boss Conor Ridge was - and he breathed a big sigh of relief when the case was officially settled.

The High Court in Dublin was told that the row had been resolved following last-ditch negotiations between the star's lawyers and advisers and Conor Ridge of Horizon Sports Management.

The terms of the settlement were not detailed in court. But a source close to the case said the settlement was "far north" of $20m.

"It's in the public domain that the amount of money owing under the contract and the money likely to be generated from the contract was $20m," the source said.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Rory McIlory is the world's number one golfer

Mr Ridge, who was flanked by supporters in the public gallery, hugged and kissed them after the announcement was made.

The two sides had been locked in talks for about 10 hours on Tuesday at the Four Courts complex in central Dublin, with McIlroy leaving at about 21:00 local time, without making any comment.

When the case was called on Wednesday, Paul Gallagher, senior counsel for McIlroy, told the court: "The entire matter has been resolved."

The 25-year-old golfer, from Holywood, County Down, won the Dubai Desert Classic at the weekend.

He has now achieved four wins and three runner-up finishes in his last seven European Tour events.

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