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McIlroy and Clarke awarded


Major winners Darren Clarke and Rory McIlroy are both recognised in the New Year Honours List today.

Clarke, 43, receives an OBE five months after he won the Open at Sandwich, while fellow Northern Irishman McIlroy is awarded an MBE. McIlroy, 22, won the US Open at Congressional by eight shots in June in a record low score of 16-under-par 268.

There is a knighthood for former Aston Villa chairman Doug Ellis, 87, who is recognised for his charity work. The entrepreneur, who had two spells at Villa totalling 35 years and infamously became known as "Deadly Doug" for his reputation for sacking managers, has invested heavily in community and charitable projects in the west Midlands.

Also knighted are two men for their involvement in the organisation of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Charles Allen is a board member on organising committee LOCOG and John Armitt, recognised for services to engineering and construction, is the chairman of the Olympic Delivery Authority.

Former Formula One world champion Nigel Mansell and England and Wales Cricket Board chairman Giles Clarke receive CBEs. Mansell, who won the world title in 1992 and followed up by claiming the IndyCar championship the following year, is honoured in his role as president of UK Youth. Much-loved retired cricket umpire Dickie Bird is awarded an OBE, while England rugby league captain Jamie Peacock gets an MBE.