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Girlfriend Caroline's tennis triumph seals a brilliant day

Rory McIlroy won't be losing any sleep about his financial future -- but he's still having to sacrifice some shuteye for girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki.

Confirmation of McIlroy's new Nike deal came just hours before Wozniacki battled to a 2-6 6-3 6-3 first round win at the Australian Open.

"Great comeback by @CaroWozniacki! Off and running at the Australian Open... Now I can get a few more hours sleep!" the 23-year-old wrote.

Former women's world number one Wozniacki looked in trouble early in the match before she rallied to seal a second-round clash with Croatia's Donna Vekic.

She told reporters she appreciated McIlroy's support.

"He went to bed at midnight their time and woke up at three their time, then watched me and back to sleep for another couple of hours," she said.

"I think I've messed up with his sleep a little bit. That's a true fan. It's great to have that support."







Rumours

World number one McIlroy, who topped the money list on both the European and PGA tours last year, begins the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship on Thursday and Wozniacki wished him luck.

"He has a big tournament coming up as well, his first tournament of the year and hopefully he can get a good start to his year as well."

The couple, who now live in the USA, were forced to deny rumours of an engagement after Caroline was spotted wearing a large ring after Christmas.

But does his family ever envisage the day when Rory might even go a step further?

Rory's uncle Colm said: "I met Caroline for the first time at Royal Portrush (last summer's Irish Open).

"Rory is very, very fond of her, but I wouldn't know where the relationship goes from here. Both seem deeply dippy."

hnews@herald.ie