Rory McIlroy and Wife Erica Welcome Daughter Poppy Kennedy: 'The Absolute Love of Our Lives'

Rory McIlroy's first child arrived on Monday, Aug. 31

Rory Mcilroy Instagram
Rory McIlroy and daughter Poppy. Photo: Rory Mcilroy Instagram; Andrew Lipovsky/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Rory McIlroy is a dad!

The Ireland-born golfer, 31, welcomed his first child with wife Erica on Monday, Aug. 31, in Jupiter, Florida, he announced on Instagram Thursday morning.

Posting a black-and-white snapshot of the newborn's tiny hand grasping his pinky finger, McIlroy wrote, "Poppy Kennedy McIlroy, born August 31st, 12:15pm. She is the absolute love of our lives."

"Mother and baby are doing great," he continued. "Massive thank you to all the staff at Jupiter Medical Center and Dr Sasha Melendy for their amazing care ❤️❤️❤️"

Various members of the professional golfing community offered the new dad their well-wishes in the comments, like new mom Michelle Wie, who wrote, "POPPPYYYYYYY!! 😍😍😍 Kenna's excited to meet ya!"

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2016 Ryder Cup - Opening Ceremony
Rory McIlroy and wife Erica. David Cannon/Getty

McIlroy confirmed that he would become a father soon to a baby girl on Saturday after playing his round at the 2020 BMW Championship in Chicago. (He tied for 12th in the competition.)

"We're about to be parents very soon, so we're obviously super excited," the athlete said, according to Golfweek.

"We've been sharing the news with friends and family, obviously, but I didn't think it was something that I really particularly needed to share out here," McIlroy added. "It's a private matter, but we're really excited and can't wait for her to get here."

The soon-to-be dad admitted he was "just waiting for a phone call," quipping that if the call came that his wife was in labor, he would be "out of here."

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy. Ben Jared/Getty Images

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The four-time major champion opened up to PEOPLE last month about his current focus in his sport and what's next in his career — but also said he has enjoyed spending time with his family as of late amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) global health crisis.

During golf's three-month hiatus, McIlroy said he could finally get rare downtime with his loved ones, including his wife of three years. Being away from the tour meant, for the first time since he was 15 years old, McIlroy spent more than three weeks at home.

"It was really a refreshing time to be able to do that," he recalled. "I mean, I wish I was still out there playing golf, and doing what I want to do, but at the same time, I feel very fortunate that I came out of it healthy. My family came out of it healthy and we spent a lot of time together."

"To spend 12 straight weeks at home, and sleeping in your own bed every night, there's something to that," McIlroy added.

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