Northern Ireland golf star Darren Clarke is dating former beauty queen and model agency boss Alison Campbell, the Belfast Telegraph can reveal.
Mr Clarke (40) and the 47-year-old ex-Miss Northern Ireland have been seeing each other for several weeks.
The couple, who both come from Co Tyrone, attended Eamonn Holmes’ star-studded 50th birthday bash at Old Trafford last weekend.
And the pair are believed to have enjoyed a cosy night out in Belfast this week.
Confirming their relationship, Ms Campbell, who runs the Miss Northern Ireland beauty pageant every year, said: “There’s no point denying it. Yes, Darren and I have been on a few dates and we’re having lots of fun. He’s a really nice guy and we get on very well, so who knows what might happen?
“But for now we’re happy to continue seeing each other and enjoying each other’s company.”
Mr Clarke lost his wife Heather to breast cancer in August 2006. He has two sons — Tyrone (11) and Conor (8).
He was later linked romantically with divorced mother-of-six Nicola Regan, whom he described at the time as his “shoulder to lean on”.
Alison, who is a divorcee, was going out with a local businessman for several years but they split up earlier this year.
She also has two sons, Stuart (21) and Philip (18).
Following the death of his wife Mr Clarke was hailed a hero when he soldiered on to help take Europe to victory over the US in the 2006 Ryder Cup. When the European team collected the cup their blazers were pink, the colour of the charity Breast Cancer Care.
Mr Clarke is one of Northern Ireland’s most popular sporting figures and was runner-up to Zara Phillips in the 2006 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award.