Open champion Rory McIlroy reportedly rang Irish model Nadia Forde to apologise after he was pictured with Belfast model Sasha Gale.

According to the Sunday Independent, the 25-year-old pro-golfer rang Nadia after he heard that she was upset that he was hanging out with another woman.

A friend of Nadia's told the paper: "Rory apologised to her and seemed upset that he had caused her needless embarrassment.

“From what I gather he also said there was nothing going on with this Sasha girl – it was just lunch.

“But Nadia stressed to him that they are just friends now so she has no issue with any girl he dates and said he doesn't need to give her any explanation.

“All he needed to do was let her know what she was waking up to in the papers.”

Despite being spotted leaving a club together a few week ago, Nadia's friend insisted that the pair are just friends, saying: “As far as I know she hasn’t replied to any of Rory’s latest texts and right now she’s wondering if it’s worth the drama of being his friend at all.

“She has been very loyal to him, if you notice they have never been pictured together in the papers and she has never spoken about him but right now she’s wondering why she would bother inviting all this stress into her life.

“She is being painted as a jilted lover when the funny thing is that she was adamant these past few months that they should just concentrate on being friends and go from there”.