Singapore: Graeme McDowell on Wednesday distanced himself from fellow Northern Irish star Rory McIlroy's decision to follow him to a new management company, saying he played no part in the move.
The 2009 US Open champion said McIlroy's surprise split from Andrew "Chubby" Chandler's International Sports Management (ISM) to join Horizon Sports Management had nothing to do with their close friendship.
"Rory and I are very good friends, that's been highlighted over the years. But I certainly had nothing to do with that," McDowell said ahead of the Singapore Open.
"Rory's made a business decision, it's nothing to do with friendships or anything like that, it's a decision for his career.
"I was never really going to be having anything to do with a decision like that. There's no point in him looking back 10 years from now and resenting me for maybe putting him up the wrong road from a business point of view."
McIlroy's move, just four months after his watershed, eight-shot US Open win, proved controversial among the close-knit golf community with world number three Lee Westwood calling it "bizarre".
But McDowell, who previously made the same move from ISM to Horizon, denied poaching McIlroy, 22.
"I left him completely on his own to make that decision," McDowell said.
"Of course he's seen the great job that I've had done for me the last few years but apart from that, Rory and I are friends and I'd never try to sell him a management company. It's business and he's made a business decision."