Rory McIlroy has decided to represent Ireland in the Rio Olympics this summer despite his concerns over the Zika virus outbreak.
After he won the Irish Open two weeks ago, McIlroy said he was considering skipping the Olympics because he wants to start a family with his fiancee Erica Stoll at some point in the near future. The Zika virus is transmitted through mosquitoes and can cause serious birth defects and other complications.
On Wednesday, McIlroy declared himself “ready to play” in Rio after learning more about Zika.
“I feel like the advice I’ve sought out over the past 10 days has put my mind at ease and makes me more comfortable going down there knowing that, even if I do contract Zika, it’s not the end of the world,” he said, via Ryan Ballengee of Devil Ball Golf. “It takes six months to pass through your system, and you’re fine.”
McIlroy said he feels more comfortable now knowing that there is testing for the Zika virus.
“You can get tested for it, and it’s either a yes or a no you’ve had it,” he said. “It’s a virus. It works its way out of your system, and you become immune to it.”
The Zika virus certainly does not sound fun. An MLB pitcher recently opened up about contracting it in his home country of Venezuela over the offseason, and it took him two months to fully recover.
Like McIlroy, Pau Gasol recently revealed he may skip the Olympics due to Zika concerns.
Rory McIlroy honored Kobe Bryant with some of his apparel during the opening round of the Masters on Thursday.
McIlroy, who is searching for his first career green jacket to complete the career grand slam, wore white, black and gold shoes with the date “4/13” inscribed on them. The date represents when Kobe will play the final game of his career.
— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) April 7, 2016
Nike said in a news release that McIlroy’s shoes are a “metaphoric nod to Bryant’s golden career fading to black on April 13.” Of course, both McIlroy and Kobe are endorsed by Nike.
McIlroy seems to pay attention to the NBA. You might remember when he defended LeBron James against critics several years ago. While Nike undoubtedly sent McIlroy the gear and asked him to wear it, he must be a fan of Kobe to have agreed.
World No. 3-ranked golfer Rory McIlroy has struggled to make putts through the early part of the season, so he is making a major change to his technique.
McIlroy shared a video on Instagram earlier this week that showed him practicing his putting, and he was using the left-hand-low grip. He told reporters on Wednesday that he has used the grip during drills in the past but has decided to give it a try in tournament play.
A video posted by Rory McIlroy (@rorymcilroy) on
“It’s a drill that I’ve always done,” he said, according to The Associated Press. “And I’ve putted a lot just with my left hand. It’s one of those things where the drill started to feel a little bit better than the real thing, so I’m just going to stick with it.”
McIlroy decided to make the switch after shooting back-to-back rounds of 72 at The Honda Classic last weekend. He says his confidence was shot and there were a couple of short putts he knew he missed before he made contact with the ball.
“So it was, ‘I need to do something here,'” McIlroy explained. “I was sort of playing around with a few different grips on the putting green over the weekend. This one felt more natural to me because I’ve done it before and I do it quite a lot when I’m just practicing in drills. I thought, `Why not give it a go?'”
McIlroy said he will stick with cross-handed putting for a bit even if it doesn’t go well over the next couple of weeks. That means we’ll likely be watching it at the Masters in roughly a month.
Between his new putting grip and the surgical procedure he recently underwent, McIlroy should hit his stride again in no time.
- Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy underwent Lasik eye surgery earlier this month, and the golfer is already seeing beneficial results from the procedure.
The current No. 3 world ranked golfer raved to The Guardian in recent comments about how his vision is now better than 20/20.
“Now it is amazing, it really is. I had it done and the morning after it felt a bit gritty and stuff, which they said it would. I have been on drops for the last couple of weeks. But I had to go pretty quickly for a routine check-up and when I went there it was better than 20-20 vision already,” McIlroy told The Guardian.
McIlroy said he had been thinking about getting Lasik eye surgery since he was 18, but he held off for fear that something terrible could happen, ending his career. He decided to finally undergo the surgery because he feels comfortable with what he has already achieved in his career and felt it was worth the risk for the potential reward. It sounds like he is quite satisfied.
McIlroy, now 26, has already won four majors in his career. Between the eye surgery and engagement to girlfriend Erica Stoll, it’s been a big offseason for him. Maybe 2016 will bring a lot of success on the course as well.
- Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy seems to be pretty thrilled about his engagement to new girlfriend Erica Stoll.
McIlroy and Stoll first met at Medinah in 2012 when she came to his aid and helped him from being late at the Ryder Cup. They began dating since late 2014, some months after McIlroy called off his engagement to Caroline Wozniacki. During a recent trip to Paris, the former world No. 1 golfer proposed, and the two got engaged.
Speaking from the Facebook headquarters in Dublin, McIlroy talked about Stoll.
“I know you’ve seen Erica around tournaments a lot but we really have tried to keep it low key,” he said via The Guardian. “She is a low-key person but she brings a level of normality to everything. She has a calming presence and that’s not just on me, it is noticeable in any company.”
Unlike Wozniacki who is also a former No. 1-ranked player in her sport, Stoll is not someone used to being in the spotlight. That seems to work quite well for McIlroy.
“She never wants to be the center of attention and is always comfortable in the background. It is great having someone like that and someone who knows what it is all about, having been around the game.
“She has been a great influence on me and has brought such a great balance to my life, between who I am when people see me out in the public eye and who I am at home. So that side of my life is really good just now. We are excited, our parents are excited, so it is a really happy time.”
Though he is in the middle of the golf offseason, McIlroy does not see a wedding happening too soon. He says nothing is planned for 2016, but something may happen beyond that. It also seems like that part doesn’t matter as much; he seems to have found the right girl for him, unlike his relationship with Wozniacki, whom many thought was wrong for him.
PGA superstar Rory McIlroy and his girlfriend Erica Stoll attended their first public event as an engaged couple Thursday night.
In the wake of rumors that McIlroy had popped the question during a recent trip to Paris, Stoll was spotted wearing an impressive diamond engagement ring at the Paddy Wallace Fund for Autism event in Belfast, Ireland. Us Weekly shared a photo of the bling.
McIlroy and Stoll, a PGA Tour employee, have been dating for over a year. They got together not long after McIlroy broke off his engagement (over the phone?) with women’s tennis star Carolina Wozniacki. McIlroy has said he is very happy with Stoll, and the four-time major champion’s friends recently said they believe she is the one.
Unless Stoll really loves the work she does with the PGA Tour, it’s probably safe for her to give that job up now. This is just a hunch, but we’re guessing McIlroy makes enough money to support the two of them.
Rory McIlroy and his girlfriend Erica Stoll have reportedly decided to take the next step in their relationship.
According to the Irish Independent, McIlroy proposed to Stoll during a recent trip that the couple took to Paris. Rory shared a photo of the Eiffel Tower on social media earlier this week, though he made no mention of an engagement.
However, sources told the Independent that McIlroy presented Stoll, a PGA Tour employee, with a “sizable sparkler” and that the couple is thrilled. A spokesperson for McIlroy would not confirm the report, but the timing meshes with Rory’s buddies recently saying they believe Erica is the one.
McIlroy was previously engaged to women’s tennis star Caroline Wozniacki over a year ago, but he got cold feet and dumped her over the phone. Hopefully Stoll has better luck getting Rory to commit.
H/T Eye on Golf