Everyone loves the Ryder Cup, but it has a special significance for Rory McIlroy and his wife Erica Stoll. The couple first met in 2012 after Stoll kept McIlroy from missing his Ryder Cup tee time. Maggie Budzar, who worked with Stoll at the PGA Tour at the time, detailed the story to The Guardian.
It was 10.30am, I knew [McIlroy’s caddie] JP Fitzgerald had left about an hour earlier. I knew Rory’s tee time was 11.25 and he was the third group to go off. And we still hadn’t seen him.
I started getting worried that something had happened to him or that he had taken a different ride to the course. There was only one room still in use when housekeeping checked and a male voice said not to come in. We figured it had to be him because by now we knew he wasn’t at the course.
I called the guys at the driving range to see if they had seen him. They hadn’t so I called the European Tour officials to alert them. At first I was going to drive him to the course because I knew the way and we didn’t want to put a volunteer under stress in the courtesy car. I then asked a trooper at the front if he could take him with the flash light on. He said that would be OK. I gave Rory the choice and he went straight to the front seat of the trooper’s car. That was about 10.52.”
Rory & Erica Are Reunited With the Ryder Cup For the First Time as a Married Couple
Six years later, the couple is back at the Ryder Cup, but this time as husband and wife. Stoll and McIlroy got married at Ashford Castle in Ireland in 2017. Stoll is in Paris rooting McIlroy on as he is one of the star golfers for Europe. McIlroy credits his wife for pulling him out of a post-Masters funk. McIlroy had a chance to win the 2018 Masters, but did not play up to his standards on the final day.
“But it got to the point where Erica had to drag me out of the house,” McIlroy explained to the New York Post. “She just said we’re going to go out and do something. And once I got back into my routine, I was fine. Before, there were a few quiet moments when you catch yourself thinking back on the round, even though I was trying to immerse myself in anything but golf.”
Prior to his wife’s intervention, McIlroy was binge-watching shows and drinking red wine.
“When I got back home I sort of threw the clubs in a closet and I spent about a week decompressing and trying to get over it,” McIlroy told the New York Post. “I was binge-watching a couple of shows, I read a couple of books, drank a few bottles of wine — no, not like that, not all at once! That sounds really bad. It wasn’t that bad.