Amanda Balionis has Rory McIlroy ‘eating out the palm of her hand’ with golf star ‘purring’

In recent weeks, there have been rumors that Rory McIlroy and Amanda Balionis have started dating. The two appeared together at the RBC Canadian Open.

According to body language expert Judi James, during a recent interview at the RBC Canadian Open, CBS Sports broadcaster Amanda Balionis left Rory McIlroy “purring.”

Before last month’s PGA Championship, McIlroy filed for divorce from his seven-year wife, Erica Stoll. Since then, the Northern Irishman has been romantically linked to CBS reporter Balionis. Though she was previously married to former NFL quarterback Bryn Renner, the journalist has since taken off her wedding band and gone back to using her maiden name.

Prior to the PGA Tour event in Hamilton last week, a US Weekly article claimed the two only had a “professional relationship,” downplaying any romantic ties. Regarding the rumors, neither McIlroy nor Balionis have responded.

But on Sunday, the couple’s rumored romance came back into the public eye when they both showed up for an interview with Balionis after McIlroy’s final round six-under-par 64 at Hamilton Golf and Country Club. Both of them seemed comfortable during the interview; James claimed that Balionis had employed a tactic on McIlroy called “ego-stroking.”

According to her statement to Mirror Sport, Balionis is “stroking” or “ego-stroking” McIlroy with enough positive cues to make him feel “purr,” which guarantees her a great interview with lots of chemistry each time.

James continued, revealing that this is a typical procedure for female broadcasters interviewing men: “A lot of female presenters in sports where men predominate use this technique. In addition to getting some guys to pay them full attention and even eat out of their hands, non-sexual flirtation rituals can give the presenter the upper hand during the interview.

“Obtaining ideas and glimpses that the respondent may have been more reticent to share.” During the post-round conversation, McIlroy was observed grinning and chuckling. James disclosed that this indicated that the former world No. 1 was ‘letting his guard down’ in front of Balionis.

“Balionis is obviously trying her hardest to stroke McIlroy’s ego with her eye-stroking, nose-wrinkling smiles, and nonverbal cues that seem to be intended to make him laugh and let down his guard. Though he’s acting coy, he’s obviously soaking it up. With his head lowered and his brim pulled over his face, he avoids making eye contact with Balionis. He seems like a bashful schoolboy when he smiles.”

James did clarify that the tactic used by Balionis might be a form of “sofa-chemistry,” or fake flirting meant to facilitate the interview in front of the camera. The hug between McIlroy and the CBS reporter, which James called “unusual,” was then observed happening away from the screen.

“Husbring the presenter after an interview is atypical since you are both miked up, and it’s frequently the last thing a presenter wants to do when it comes to tangles in their hair or makeup,” she continued.

“Considering the situation, however, Ryan has embraced quite closely. She appears to be adopting a more professional demeanor as he puts his arm around her and puts his face close to her while she holds her hand microphone out of the way with one outstretched arm.”

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