Friends Surprised But Supportive Over McIlroy and Wozniacki Split

Fellow athletes offer words of advice
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May 4, 2014; Charlotte, NC, USA; Rory McIlroy tees off on the fourth hole during the final round of the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow Club.
May 4, 2014; Charlotte, NC, USA; Rory McIlroy tees off on the fourth hole during the final round of the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow Club. Reuters

The sporting world is in shock as golden couple, golfer Rory McIlroy and tennis star Caroline Wozniacki announced the ending of their engagement and their relationship just days after invitations were released.

The couple were engaged on New Year's Eve in Sydney with a  £120,000 ($219,358)  diamond ring. McIlroy, made the announcement that the wedding is off on Wednesday, May 25 after five months of being engaged.

''There is no right way to end a relationship that has been so important to two people. I wish Caroline all the happiness she deserves and thank her for the great times we've had,"' he said in a statement.

Friends of the couple were shocked and surprised by the decision and were willing to offer advice and a shoulder to lean on.

Fellow golfer Sergio Garcia has been involved in two high-profile breakups during his career and was the first to offer some insight on the news.

"I haven't seen Rory since I heard the news but when I do I will definitely put my arm around his shoulder and ask if he wants to talk about it," the Spaniard said.

Garcia has also experienced publicized break-ups with former world number one tennis player Martina Hingis and with Morgan-Leigh Norman, daughter of Australian golfer Greg.

"I've been through the same sort of thing a couple of times. I broke it off with Martina but Morgan was the one who left me. And of course how you react is different. When you are the one who leaves someone you can usually get over it quicker. But either way it is always a hard thing to do when you have been with someone for a long time, for a period of years, and shared so much together," added Garcia.

"Every case is different but for me the hurt of the breakup was one of the reasons I felt I had to stop playing the game for a while," said Garcia who, like McIlroy, is one of the favourites for the European Tour's flagship event that starts on Thursday. McIlroy has already indicated that he will not pull out form the event and needs to focus on his golf now more than ever,

Justin Rose, another young golf champion who is also one of McIlroy's Ryder Cup team mates was also surprised to hear about the break up.

"I don't know what the circumstances are so it's very difficult to comment. I regard Rory as a close friend and he vaguely asked me what I'd be doing around the time I thought the wedding might be so it's a shame. It's surprising and I feel for him. Rory's a good lad. I'm sure I'll be talking to him over the next few days," said Rose.

Malou Ejdesgaard, Wozniacki's former doubles partner said that she just received her invite to their wedding only two days ago.

"It's difficult for me to comprehend,I'm probably as surprised as everyone else.I received the invitation  two days ago. I'm sure she would have called if anything was wrong," she said, adding, "I texted her a week or two ago, and everything seemed fine. She seemed very happy."

Plans for the wedding were well under way and was set to be held on November 8 this year.

McIlroy held a press conference at Wentworth golf club in Surrey, ahead of the BMW PGA Championship where he put to rest rumours that he might pull out. He admitted it was going to be very difficult for him to concentrate on the tournament but said he had made a commitment to play and would not pull out.

Wozniacki, Currently ranked number 14 in the world, is due to compete in the French Open in Paris starting on Sunday, but may pull out.

''Officially this is because of a knee injury, but the split with Rory will not help her recovery,'' a source said.