• Abu Dhabi Championship

McIlroy: Wozniacki the right girl for me

ESPN staff
January 15, 2014 « Webb gets World Cup referee nod | Chartbeat test »
McIlroy looking forward to 2014

Rory McIlroy insists his settled private life following his engagement to tennis star Caroline Wozniacki will drive him on to rediscover his major-winning form.

While Wozniacki prepares for her second-round clash at the Australian Open in Melbourne, McIlroy is getting ready for this week's Abu Dhabi Championship.

The pair took to Twitter to announce their engagement on New Year's Day, and McIlroy feels Wozniacki "is definitely the right girl" for him as he looks to put a torrid 2013 on the golf course behind him.

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"Yes, 2013 was disappointing from a professional standpoint, but, as a whole personally it was a great year," McIlroy told the Telegraph. "I feel I have stability in my life now and the engagement will only help with regards to knowing everything in my life is set. I mean, if you get engaged, you plan to spend the rest of your life with that person, so it is a big decision. But she's definitely the right girl for me."

During 2013, McIlroy was involved in a legal battle with his former management company Horizon, and failed to immediately adjust to the new Nike equipment he was contractually obliged to play with after striking a £78 million deal with the sportswear giant.

But he got 2014 off to the perfect start, getting down on one knee in front of Wozniacki on a boat in Sydney harbour with fireworks going off all around them.

"I guess there was a bit of romance involved," he said. "It was a great way to finish 2013 and to start 2014. Reflecting back on last year there was a lot of instability going on but I'm starting this season on such a different sort of platform. Everything feels like it's fallen in place and I can just focus on my golf and play the way I know I can.

"I'm not going to lie and say it didn't affect me. Of course it did. I was thinking of other things [apart from golf] when I really shouldn't have had to. But that's the last year I'm ever going to have go through that. I've learnt from it and am smarter because of it. And it's great that I've gone through it at this stage in my career and not 15 years down the line."

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