Belfast Telegraph

Did Rory McIlory propose to US sweetheart Erica Stoll in Paris?

By Allan Preston

Did Rory McIlroy do it again?

After a report from a major golfing website, fans around the world have been left desperate for confirmation that the Holywood golf ace proposed to his American girlfriend Erica Stoll in Paris.

With no official announcement from the couple, the silence has been deafening. McIlroy had prompted speculation after posting a night-time picture of the Eiffel Tower on his Instagram page on Wednesday night.

Donal Hughes from made the confident prediction that wedding bells were on the way, stating that "the news is 100% official from several mutual friends".

He continued: "I'm not ordinarily into news but here's a World Exclusive for you. It's official.

"Rory McIlroy is engaged to marry his girlfriend Erica Stoll after he got down on one knee and made a romantic proposal last night.

"Perhaps it was fitting that the venue for the proposal was Paris, after a tough couple of weeks for the city."

Shortly after, the Irish Independent newspaper reported the rumours were true after "a source close to the golfer confirmed that he popped the question in France."

A spokesperson for the golfer declined to comment saying "we don't comment on speculation about our client's personal life."

McIlroy (26) was previously engaged to tennis star Caroline Wozniacki - having proposed to her in Sydney on New Year's Eve in 2013 - and they were instantly feted as sports' golden couple, with their very own celebrity moniker of 'Wozilroy'.

But the match was famously called off by McIlroy after the wedding invitations were sent out, reportedly during a 10 minute phone call.

At the time he had said that "he wasn't ready for all that marriage entails".

Later, unflattering reports emerged that Wozniacki had been behaving like a 'Bridezilla' in the lead-up to the wedding.

Stoll (29) - a former manager of championship volunteer operations for the PGA of America - famously woke McIlroy up after he had slept in during the Ryder cup in 2012.

Previously shying away from publicity, the couple made a major endorsement of their relationship after Rory placed Erica beside him for photos with his parents while accepting his trophy for winning the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

Last week friends had said they were counting the days until the engagement.

"Don't be surprised if you hear he pops the question, it's going very, very well," a friend had said.

Another source revealed Erica met Rory's friends in Florida and Ireland recently and that his circle have warmed to her and delight in the effect she has on the golfer.

"She's a really nice girl," said the well-placed source.

"Very nice and down to earth and the one thing everyone is saying is how good she is for Rory.

"I wouldn't be surprised if they do tie the knot.

"She's met his family too. His parents are very fond of her. And she gels well with everyone. You'd be hard pressed to find a better match."

Online speculation has continued in the absence of an official announcement. Irish golfing fan Ally Kilbride tweeted: "Say it isn't so @McIlroyRory got engaged again and it's not me!!!!!#Devastated."

Tony Corcoran was not so concerned with the fanfare of wedding plans, tweeting "@McIlroyRory engaged again, hope it doesn't affect 2016 season!"

That was probably referring to the idea that Rory's previous relationship woes were affecting his performance on the golf course.

On the Belfast Telegraph Facebook page, Margaret West said: "He doesn't believe in wasting time, does he?"

Meanwhile, Mark Paul asked: "Wonder how many people will be expecting an invite?"

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