| 14°C Dublin

Old romantic Rory was 'sweating a lot' when he putt the big question

HE'S a golfer who's cool under pressure, but popping the question caused Rory McIlroy to "sweat a lot".

The sports star (24) proposed to his girlfriend Caroline Wozniaki (23) on New Year's Eve in Sydney.

The old romantic even asked the tennis player's parents' permission weeks before the big question.


Although Rory was confident of a positive response, it still didn't stop the nerves from taking over.

"I was sweating a lot – a lot," he told a press conference in Abu Dahbi. "I'd an idea she'd say 'yes', but you never really know until it actually happens.

"We were out on a boat in Sydney Harbour for New Year's Eve, just in front of the Opera House, and the fireworks were going off.

"I guess there was a little bit of romance involved, and, yeah, she was surprised. I had an idea it was something she wanted and hoped she'd say 'yes' and she did. I'd been thinking about it for a while and asked Caroline's parents in the middle of December.

"If anything, it can only help to have that stability – knowing that everything in my life in that regard is set. It's a big step in anyone's life.

"If you get engaged you plan on spending the rest of your life with that person, so it's a big decision. But I feel like she's definitely the right girl for me."


Rory, from Co Down, selected an eight-carat diamond engagement ring to reflect his fiance's favourite number, eight.

And Caroline showed off her bling after storming to an impressive win at the Australian Open yesterday.

The power couple met in the summer of 2011, a month after McIlroy's win at the US Open at Congressional.