Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Rory McIlroy and fiancée Erica Stoll pictured in January
Two-time Masters champion Rory McIlroy has credited his fiancée Erica Stoll for helping bring him back from the brink of a breakdown.
The Northern Irishman has blamed his heavy drink-binging for a weight gain of 22lb (9kg).
“In a really good way, I got myself together,” McIlroy told USA Today.
“My wife took me in and I fell in love with her, and that’s the best thing you can have. You need a positive atmosphere around you.”
According to the newspaper, McIlroy’s approach has changed following a revelation by former wife Caroline Wozniacki that she discovered that the star had been having an affair with South African tennis player Caroline Garcia.
“I was carrying the same weight for years and didn’t realise it,” he said.
McIlroy, who has won four majors, began using a dietician and exercise specialist and lost six pounds in six weeks.
“There’s a stigma about guys at some point in their lives getting down and out and getting deep and dark. Some guys don’t have that ability to turn it around,” he said.
The 27-year-old is recovering from a “torn” calf muscle in his left leg, but says he expects to compete in his two forthcoming tournaments.
“I am trying to get back to my best, but it is still a process,” he said.
“The only thing that makes me feel better is not being able to lift a golf club at the moment, but we will see how it goes.”