Rory McIlroy's fiancée Erica Stoll shows off Barbados tan as she cheers him on at The K Club
Published 20/05/2016 | 08:28
The weather has improved greatly in recent days, but Rory McIlroy’s fiancée Erica Stoll was taking no chances at the K Club for the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open.
The 29-year-old PGA employee was wrapped up against the elements and kept a low profile throughout yesterday as she watched her partner on the opening day of the country’s premier golf tournament.
They first met at the Ryder Cup in Illinois in September 2012 and began dating in 2014. Former world number one Rory, from Holywood, Co Down, popped the question to the blonde beauty in Paris last year.
The couple have mostly kept their relationship away from prying eyes, but Erica is regularly seen at the 27-year-old’s tournaments around the world.
Day one got off to a cracking start for Rory who finished two shots off the lead in front of almost 13,000 spectators.
After a string of poor results in the competition in recent years, he is hoping this will be his year.
“To win here, no matter what the circumstances are, to win the Irish Open would be something that would be very special, and I’ve got off to a great start towards doing that this week,” he said.
One Direction’s Niall Horan joined Rory on the course after taking part in the charity pro-am event on Wednesday alongside rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll and snooker star Dennis Taylor.
Artane pals Justine O’Sullivan (26) and Lorraine Connolly (28) took the day off work to enjoy the golf.
“We got here just before noon. I took the day off work to come down,” said Justine.
“We came for the beer and to see Rory McIlroy as well. This is our first year. We’re used to going to Oxegen. This is a bit like Oxegen but it’s a little more civilised.”
Ciara Lynch, from Meath, said: “I’ve been down here since 7am. I saw Niall Horan and all the screaming young ladies following him around. It’s much busier today.”