McIlroy returns with a wedding ring and new clubs in the bag

And what McIlroy has is seemingly everything - an awe-inspiring golf game, a attractive wife, a support system with family and friends, an abundance of riches.

World number two Rory McIlroy has chosen to play with Taylor Made clubs following Nike's decision to stop making golf equipment.

McIlroy is already one of golf's most marketable stars, recently signing a $200 million extension to his existing contract to wear Nike golf apparel. The UK tax exile spoke of the impending joy of finally being able to settle down in one country.

"I've finally got a home to go to", McIlroy said. "Now it's just about trying to make the most of the fortune I've had". He previously had an equipment contract with Nike before it announced late previous year that it was pulling out of that market.

He is also endorsed by Santander, Omega and Bose, which helped him top the Golf Digest list in April with annual incomings estimated to be almost US$50m (NZ$72m). Now it can amend that to US$60m (NZ$87m).

What's in Rory McIlroy's new TaylorMade Bag?

Rory McIlroy's completion of the career Grand Slam will have to wait another year, but his disappointment didn't last too long.

He initially went to the TaylorMade M2 driver and fairway woods, before settling with the Callaway Epic Sub Zero driver at the start of this year along with Callaway irons and Titleist Vokey wedges.

McIlroy feels his game is in good shape ahead of his first tournament as a married man, and he is confident that he can contend for golf's "fifth major" at Sawgrass despite having not played competitively since finishing tied for seventh at Augusta National five weeks ago. "I wasn't really happy with the golf ball I was playing, and I needed to do something".

"Being able to climb that mountain is very hard, because sitting back and knowing that I've done it before, how much work I actually had to put into it, is tough in itself", Day said.

"The ball was what led me to this point", said McIlroy on Tuesday at The Players Championship. I'm 28 years old. I feel very settled and very lucky to be in this position.

The world No 2 now chose to use Taylor Made for all his equipment, including his ball, and is hopeful that he can displace Dustin Johnson and once again officially become the world's leading player.

McIlroy and his new wife have been keen to keep private the details of the wedding at Ashford Castle in Co Mayo, although he did reveal who received the biggest hug. That was reserved for Sergio Garcia, the Spaniard who finally broke his major curse at Augusta.

"Well, we thought, we have people at the wedding who are 80 and people who are 20". Once there, he was screaming at his television as he watched two good friends - Garcia and Justin Rose - battle for the title. I didn't see him until the wedding and gave him a bear hug.

  • Julie Sanders