Nike were irate that Rory would be wearing New Balance gear.
I'm finding it difficult to believe that Rory McIlroy has pulled out of the Olympic Games due to the Zika Virus.  He has spoken several times at length about the minimal risk involved and Team Captain Paul McGinley admitted he was shocked with his sudden u-turn.

McGinner's wondered yesterday why Rory would walk around with a dead arm for four days after receiving his shots if he didn't intend going.

So could there be another reason? A more business related one?

Well there is the small issue of Rory's participation in the Olympics potentially being a huge embarrassment to Nike who paid enormous money to sign him.

Irish Olympic Chief Pat Hickey originally went to Nike seeking to have them sponsor the Irish Olympic Team kit and was laughed out of the room. That was before McIlroy declared for Ireland.

"Just in case he declared for us, we went to Nike and told them we might have Rory", Hickey said at the time. But they just dismissed us out of hand and now they regret it, I believe. I’m told the Nike guys nearly collapsed when they heard what happened and that they’d missed a golden opportunity. I can’t say what the deal would have cost Nike to get in ahead of New Balance. But it would have been peanuts compared to what they are paying Rory."

Hickey then did with a deal with another sports company, New Balance, to kit out the entire team including the golfers.

In the meantime McIlroy declared for Ireland and we had the prospect of him being clothed head to toe in New Balance gear on the world's biggest stage.

Nike were absolutely seething at the prospect of their $250 million star man standing on the rostrum receiving a golf medal logo'd in New Balance gear.  They were facing having the legs cut from under them by New Balance for pennies; €1.2 million in fact to sponsor the entire Irish Team.

Yes it is possible that Rory suddenly became scared of Zika and withdrew for that reason. Or maybe there were other reasons.

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