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In this paper, we apply the maximal ratio combining (MRC) technique to achieve higher detection probability in cognitive radio networks over correlated Rayleigh fading channels. We present a simple approach to derive the probability of detection in closed-form expression. The numerical results reveal that the detection performance is a monotonically increasing function with respect to the number of antennas. Moreover, we provide sets of complementary receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves to illustrate the effect of antenna correlation on the sensing performance of cognitive radio networks employing MRC schemes in some respective scenarios.