Ireland's Shane Lowry smiles as he sits next to the Claret Jug trophy. Photo: AP Photo/Peter Morrison

PORTRUSH – The Open champion Shane Lowry believes the 2020 Olympic experience will be ‘incredible’ and says he would ‘absolutely’ carry the Irish flag in Tokyo, if asked.

Lowry was a late withdrawal from the Rio games in 2016 for family reasons, but will join Rory McIlroy on Team Ireland next summer as a fellow major winner.

“I missed the last Olympics and got a lot of stick for that,” he said. “I had my own reasons. This victory has gone a long way to putting me on the plane for Japan.

“I’m very excited. We’ll be going over the week after the Open for the opening ceremony, so to be around all that will be pretty cool. Hopefully, I can bring a medal home.”

Lowry is on a high after becoming the fifth Irishman to lift the Claret Jug and believes if he repeats his Portrush form he can win big again. “I go about my business the way I want to,” he said.

“I’m my own person, and as long as I feel that’s the right thing, I can turn up and feel like I can beat anyone.”

Lowry, who enjoyed a hero’s homecoming in Clara last night, will not play again until the Northern Trust Open in New Jersey in two weeks.

As the Liberty National course is next door to Manhattan, Lowry can expect raucous Irish support, just as he got at Portrush, where he was almost blown away by the partisan fervour, saying: “I just tried to enjoy it, standing there on the first tee and hearing the roar.”

He added: “It going to be crazy for a while. But when the dust settles, I can go back to doing what I normally do and just being me.”

Daily Mail