Birdies in love match as Wozniacki agrees to marry McIlroy

Tennis star and golfer announce engagement on Twitter on New Year’s Day

It’s the bookmakers you’ve got to feel sorry for. There they were, packed up for the year, ready to enjoy a well-earned New Year’s Eve after compiling yet another juvenile list of things that might happen in 2014.

And then came the tweets.

"Rory and I started 2014 with a bang! … I said YES!!!!" posted Caroline Wozniacki on New Year’s Day in Australia, where she is preparing for the first major of the season, the Australian Open, which starts on January 13.

Of course, a lot of couples like to start the year with a bang – the kids tend to be still out or in a state of comatose, and … but Woz and her golfer boyfriend Rory McIlroy don’t have any children.

Why do birdies suddenly appear …

"Happy New Year everyone!” came the slightly less ambiguous confirmation from McIlroy – a sledgehammer blow of heart-breaking news to the hopes of golfdiggers on greens and fairways across the world.

It included a picture of Wozniacki sporting the kind of ring that wouldn’t look out of place on a severed finger in a Guy Ritchie film.

“I have a feeling it's going to be a great year!! My first victory of 2014 #shesaidyes!!"

The engaged couple have been seeing each other since 2011, and twice last year, apparently authenticated stories surfaced that they were splitting up.

The game-changer name-changer

It remains to be seen whether Wozniacki will change her surname once they marry. But it probably won’t be to mesh their names into the rather hackneyed Wozzilroy, the couple’s nickname in the media since they started going out.

There’s always the Christ Evert-Lloyd tactic: adopt your husband’s name, but keep your own just in case things don’t work out.

It’s a dilemma and worthy of a new betting list for 2014. So maybe this marriage won’t be a total loss for the bookmakers after all.