Irish on the green: Rory McIlroy has time to count his Nike paycheck while Peter Lawrie jumps Darren Clarke in rankings

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Updated: January 21, 2013

It was a poor week for Irish golfers with none finishing in the top 20 and two missing the halfway cut, below we look at the performances and new rankings.

Performance
World number one Rory Mcllroy missed the cut at the Abu Dhabi Championship and looked out of sorts using his new Nike clubs.

In fact, he replaced his Nike putter with his old trusty Scotty Cameron model after one day’s use. However, he can console himself with the large pay packet he received for simply appearing at the event.

Peter Lawrie and Padraig Harrington did slightly better. Both golfers had a share of 23rd place as Harrington looks to claim back some of the form that saw him win three major titles.

Former Irish Open winner Shane Lowry is still looking to get inside the top 50 in the world for the automatic invitation to the Masters but like Mcllroy missed the cut at Abu Dhabi.

World number 17 Graeme McDowell will not feature until the Northern Trust Open in February but is already aiming to go one better than 2012 and, like Harrington, aims to prove that his 2010 U.S Open champion win was not a once off fluke.

Rankings:
Rory McIIroy is still the world number one, not news but nice to be reminded.

Peter Lawrie is the only Irish golfer to make hay in the sun by moving up to 151st after his positive finish at the Abu Dhabi Chmapionship.

His move of six places up the table surpasses the 2011 Open winner Darren Clarke, who fell ten places to 154th.

Despite Padraig Harrington’s bogey-free final round of 69 at Abu Dhabi, the Dubliner slips back down to 50th place.

Shane Lowry falls to 59th after missing the cut.

Graeme McDowell remains at 17 in the world.

Where next?
McIIroy will take four weeks off to practice his ‘butt off’ with his new clubs and will return at the Augusta Masters in early April.

Lawrie continues his desert golf by joining Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley’s five-man Irish contingent that also includes Michael Hoey, Gareth Maybin and Damien McGrane.

Harrington  has confirmed he will appear at the Waste Management Open in Phoenix next week in the first of a four-events in the U.S.

Shane Lowry will return to action in the Dubai Desert Classic at the end of the month.

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