Say it ain’t so — Rory McIlroy is engaged to girlfriend Erica Stoll, according to a report in the Irish Independent that cites a “source close to” the former world no. 1 golfer. The closest thing resembling corroborating evidence is a photo of the Eiffel Tower in Paris that McIlroy posted on his Instagram account.
At the same time, McIlroy’s camp has yet to deny the alleged engagement.
A spokesperson for the golfer declined to comment on the report. “We don’t comment on speculation about our client’s personal life,” she said.
Well, it certainly wouldn’t be the craziest happening in the world — after all, ’tis the season! If you’re in your late 20s/early 30s, then you might be noticing an influx of engagement announcements on Facebook as of late. (Don’t get me started on babies, but apparently everyone I know conceived in those cold, wintry nights this past February!)
McIlroy has been dating Stoll for around a year or so. Her first public appearance alongside him occurred earlier this year in May during the final round of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, which was hosted by McIlroy’s foundation. Coincidentally, that same day, the Times of London Magazine published a piece on McIlroy, where he opened up about his love life.
“I have met someone new,” McIlroy says. “She doesn’t play golf, but she is involved with golf. I have known her for three years and we are good friends…If everything off the golf course is good, it allows you to be better on it as well.”
“I am very happy in my love life,” he says. “We haven’t really been putting it out there. She is from America, which is why I like to spend time in Palm Beach…The past six or seven months have been really nice. That part of my life is going great.”
Since then, Stoll has been spotted in China at last month’s WGC-HSBC Champions, supporting McIlroy outside the ropes. She also accompanied him to Dubai a few weeks ago, where he captured the European Tour’s Race to Dubai. They were recently seen at Windsor park supporting the Northern Ireland football team, as well.
McIlroy has kept his relationship with Stoll on the down low. It would seem that he’s learned his lesson, so to speak, after his very public relationship, engagement and breakup with ex-fiancee Caroline Wozniacki in May 2014. McIlroy and Stoll met at the Ryder Cup in 2012. As you may recall, McIlroy got his tee time wrong for Sunday singles and was nearly late to the first tee, but Stoll, a former employee of the PGA of America, came to the rescue and managed to finagle him a police escort to whisk him to Medinah just in the nick of time. (McIlroy beat American Keegan Bradley with ease in that match. No warm-up combined with a stressful situation clearly didn’t hinder his performance.)
Congrats to the couple on their (alleged) engagement!