McIlroy going steady in Dubai as Wozniacki looks on
McIlroy makes solid start to lie five off the lead at Race to Dubai finale
Caroline Wozniacki and Rory McIlroy chat after the first round of the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai. Photograph: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images
The appearance of a blonde tennis star alongside Rory McIlroy for 18 holes at the Earth Course appeared more immediately relevant than the Northern Irishman’s first-round score in the DP World Tour Championship.
The latest set of rumours surrounding the supposed break-up of McIlroy and Caroline Wozniacki’s relationship surfaced last month. Both refused to comment on those stories, but a small sign of their inaccuracy came when McIlroy tweeted in praise of Wozniacki’s first tournament victory of the year, at the Luxembourg Open.
Some suggested on Thursday that Wozniacki’s visit to the Race to Dubai finale – she was also here last year – confirmed the Dane and her boyfriend are back on. The reality may well be that they were never off.
“It was nice,” said McIlroy of Wozniacki’s arrival. “She started her pre-season a couple of days ago and was on court this morning at seven o’clock. So she got some practice in before coming to see me. It’s good to have her here.”
McIlroy spoke after signing for what he regarded as a disappointing opening round of 71, one under par. The 24-year-old sat three under after just seven holes but subsequent dropped shots, including at the 18th, and missed opportunities on 10, 14, 15 and 16 halted an early charge.
“I felt like I played better than the score suggests,” McIlroy said. “I guess it is one of those cases of how to turn a 67 into a 71. I know there is a good score out there. It is just a case of taking your chances.
“I need to do a little bit of work on the putting green this afternoon.” - Guardian Service