Rory McIlroy is quickly becoming an international superstar. The 22-year-old golfer from Northern Ireland recently won his first major, lapping the field in a record-setting performance at the U.S. Open. He’s been on the verge of breaking out for over a year given his solid start at the Master’s, Open Championship, and his dominance at Quail Hollow. He’s favored to win this year’s Open Championship, and if he can win one before 2014, he will net his father a few hundred thousand dollars. But the best part about Rory, aside from his impressive ability, is his maturity and all-around likable personality.
After blowing the Master’s on Sunday, he handled his interview with class and said he’d have plenty of future opportunities to win. He took a picture with Charl Schwartzel and congratulated him. Then shortly thereafter, he was pounding Jagermeister straight from the bottle. The guy has fun, practices hard, and he’s an incredible sportsman.
While some 22 year olds would feel empowered by their international stardom, McIlroy has not changed much from the friendly kid he’s always been. He credits his girlfriend, Holly Sweeney, for helping keep him grounded.
“Holly and I have been together since I had just turned 16 and she was 14. She knows me better than basically anyone else in this world does, apart from my parents,” McIlroy told The Mirror. “And to have someone like that with you is very grounding.”
“She’s obviously my girlfriend but she’s also become my best friend over the past few years. I can say things to her that I wouldn’t be able to say to anyone else.”
The two split at one point last year but are back together now. One could imagine how difficult of a relationship it is to maintain with Rory traveling the world and Holly a student. Sweeney didn’t make it to the U.S. Open after flying into the Master’s and witnessing Rory’s collapse, so the plan worked out well this time. Whatever it is they did worked, so maybe they’ll keep up the same routine in the future.
More pictures of Rory McIlroy’s girlfriend Holly Sweeney.Google+