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World Tour Championship 2015

Round 4 - Rory McIlroy claims win and Race to Dubai

November 22, 2015

Rory McIlroy survived a late scare and finished his frustrating season on a high, winning both the DP World Tour Championship and the Race to Dubai crown on Sunday.

McIlroy got the better of overnight leader Andy Sullivan over the back nine to clinch the European Tour's season-ending tournament.

The third-ranked Northern Irishman shot 6-under 66 with eight birdies to finish on 21-under 267, one stroke ahead of Sullivan (68).

England's Danny Willett, who started the tournament 1,613 points behind McIlroy in the Race to Dubai and needed to beat him to become the European No. 1 for the first time in his career, finished tied for fourth on 13-under 275 after shooting 70.

South Africa's Branden Grace shot 5-under 67 in the final round to finish third on 273.

McIlroy had an anxious moment late in the day when his tee shot on the par-3 17th found the water and threatened to nullify his advantage at that stage.

But the 26-year-old McIlroy made a brilliant 40-feet putt to limit the damage to a bogey, which gave him a one-shot lead going to the 18th where he and Sullivan made par.

''In hindsight, I probably should have gone with a different club and a different shot,'' McIlroy said of his problems at the 17th. ''It's definitely probably the longest putt I've ever made for a bogey. I don't think there's been one that's come at a better time. So, yeah, definitely the best bogey of my career.''

McIlroy also won the Race to Dubai title as the European Tour's No. 1 player for the year, the third time he has secured the honor after winning in 2012 and 2014.

''To be European No. 1 for the third time in four years, that was a goal of mine at the start of the year. It was a goal of mine in the middle of the year and it was definitely a goal coming into these last few weeks,'' he said.

McIlroy's closest rival for the Race to Dubai was Willett, who made early birdies to climb to third place on the leaderboard, but both McIlroy and Sullivan had enough birdies of their own to stay comfortably clear. Willett needed to finish ahead of McIlroy in the tournament.

Sullivan had two birdies in the first two holes, and four in the first six. McIlroy bogeyed the fourth and trailed Sullivan by three shots at one stage, despite birdies on Nos. 5, 6 and 7.

But the birdies stopped for Sullivan as he started spraying his tee shots, and McIlroy edged ahead with two crucial birdies on the 14th and 15th holes.

Round 3 - Rory McIlroy just one off lead

November 22, 2015

Rory McIlroy shot the best round of the day to move within one shot of leader Andy Sullivan after the third round of the World Tour Championship on Saturday, which also puts him closer to the Race to Dubai title.

McIlroy shot a 7-under 65 at Jumeirah Golf Estates to make up three shots on Sullivan (68) and go four strokes clear of Danny Willett, his closest challenger for the season-long Race to Dubai crown. Willett looked set to be even further back but made two birdies and an eagle on his last five holes for a 67.

Sullivan made two birdies on his last four to maintain the lead with a 16-under total of 200.

Despite making eight birdies in the swirling wind, McIlroy was left ruing some the chances he missed.

''I guess you can't really walk off this golf course, especially in these conditions, and shoot 7-under and not feel good about yourself. But at the same time, I feel like it could have been a lot better,'' McIlroy said. ''The good thing is, there's still one round of golf left. If it had been the final day, I'd be kicking myself with some of the chances I missed. I am playing lovely, so bodes well for tomorrow.''

American Patrick Reed shot a 68 that gave him sole possession of third place, two shots behind McIlroy, while South Korea's Byeong-hun An (66) and Emiliano Grillo (71) of Argentina were tied for fourth at 204.

Sullivan was 2 under after seven holes, but a string of pars left him slightly frustrated before the two late birdies. He made a 20-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole, and then saved par from a similar distance on the 18th.

''Felt like the putter really saved me the last few holes,'' he said. ''The way I played, I was quite happy with the 68, really.''

Justin Rose, who was third in the Race to Dubai at the start of the week and needed to win the tournament to become the European No. 1 for the second time in his career, shot a 78 and slipped out of contention.

Round 2- Rory McIlroy moves ahead in Race to Dubai duel

November 20, 2015

Race to Dubai leader Rory McIlroy achieved separation from main rival Danny Willett by two shots in the second round of the European Tour season finale on Friday.

McIlroy, bidding to top the tour for the third time in four years, carded consecutive 68s to be at 8-under-par 136, four off Andy Sullivan's lead in the World Tour Championship.

On a day when most players went low, McIlroy could only match his opening round, including five birdies, and one bogey on the par-3 6th. He birdied only one of the four par 5s at Jumeirah Golf Estates.

''Two solid rounds of golf so far,'' McIlroy said. ''I felt like yesterday it could have been a lot better. And today, I felt like I hit the ball a little better. It wasn't quite as scrappy.

''I don't think I've taken advantage of the par 5s quite the way I would have liked to, but if I can do that over the next couple of days, and keep giving myself plenty of chances, I should be close on Sunday.''

Meanwhile, Willett, tied with McIlroy in the first round, shot a 2-under 70. The Englishman started well with birdies on Nos. 2-3, but bogeyed No. 5, and No. 16 immediately after a birdie on 15. He needed to hole a 15-footer for par on the last and keep his hopes alive.

Sullivan shot a second straight 66 to be at 12-under 132 for a one-shot lead over the equally in-form Emiliano Grillo, who posted the low round of the day, a bogey-free 8-under 64.

Sullivan has won three European Tour events this season - South African Open, Joburg Open, Portugal Masters - and was being cheered on here by 30 friends and relatives who have travelled from his hometown of Nuneaton, England.

He treated them to some stunning putts; a 50-footer for birdie on the 12th, one from nearly 30 feet on the 14th, and a 40-fooer from behind the 18th green.

''The putter just seemed to get crazy hot from the one on the 12th hole, and everything I looked at, pretty much went in,'' Sullivan said. ''It's a nice feeling.''

Grillo started and finished with birdies to reach 11 under overall. He hasn't won on the Euorpean Tour, but won the Frys.com Open, the first tournament of the new U.S. PGA Tour season last month, two weeks after he secured his card by winning the Web.com Tour Championship.

Two behind the Argentine was American Patrick Reed, who birdied five of his last six holes to close with a 65.

Reed was one shot ahead of McIlroy, Charl Schwartzel (65), and Thongchai Jaidee (67).

Two-time defending champion Henrik Stenson closed with a 69 to be 2 over for the tournament. At one stage, after six holes, the Swede was 9 over before making seven birdies in his last 12 holes.

Round 1 - Rory McIlroy & Danny Willett in contention

November 20, 2015

Rory McIlroy birdied his last hole to pace Danny Willett in their chase for the Race to Dubai trophy on the opening day of the World Tour Championship on Thursday.

McIlroy chipped in from a greenside bunker on the 18th hole to card a 4-under-par 68, tied with English golfer Willett, two shots behind the four leaders.

The pair are the main contenders to finish No. 1 for the season in the European Tour finale, McIlroy for the third time in four years, and Willett for the first time. Five others are in contention, but whoever finishes higher between McIlroy and Willett is expected to claim the trophy.

Martin Kaymer, English pair Ian Poulter and Andy Sullivan, and Australian Marcus Fraser topped the leaderboard with 6-under 66s at Jumeirah Golf Estates.

Two-time defending champion Henrik Stenson dropped five shots in his last four holes to finish on 77.

McIlroy made the turn at 2 under, bogeyed the 10th, recovered with consecutive birdies, and capped his round with an accurate chip off his fourth shot.

''Nice way to finish,'' he said. ''It was a bit scrappy before that. In between those birdies (on 11-12) and the birdie at the last, there was a bit of ugly golf in there.''

Willett had a similar round: He went 2 under going out, bogeyed one soon after the turn, and birdied the last hole.

''It's what everyone wanted, it's very close,'' Willett said. ''It's going to be a great tussle all week.''

Poulter made just one birdie on the four par-5 holes, but the Englishman didn't do much wrong in a bogey-free round.

''Took care of the par 4s and the par 3s, just didn't really take care of the par 5s.'' he said. ''There were other birdie opportunities that I would expect to hole. Most of those putts are inside 10 feet. I hit 17 greens in regulation and just two missed fairways . that's pretty solid.''

Kaymer, winless this season like Poulter, made a couple of bogeys, including one on the par-3 sixth, where he went into the water. But he made up for that with eight birdies.

Sullivan eagled the par-5 7th, and Fraser was 7 under through 14 holes but bogeyed the 16th to fall into the tie for the lead.

Francesco Molinari, on 67, was between the leaders and McIlroy, Willett and six others on 68.

Justin Rose, who was third in the Race to Dubai, made successive bogeys in his last two holes in a 1-under 71.

Patrick Reed was one shot better.

Scores

1 NIR Rory McIlroy -21 68 68 65 66 267
2 ENG Andrew Sullivan -20 66 66 68 68 268
3 RSA Branden Grace -15 68 69 69 67 273
T4 KOR Byeong Hun An -13 70 68 66 71 275
T4 ENG Matthew Fitzpatrick -13 68 69 68 70 275
T4 ARG Emiliano Grillo -13 69 64 71 71 275
T4 ITA Francesco Molinari -13 67 71 69 68 275
T4 RSA Charl Schwartzel -13 71 65 70 69 275
T4 ENG Danny Willett -13 68 70 67 70 275
T10 GER Martin Kaymer -12 66 71 71 68 276
T10 DEN Soren Kjeldsen -12 71 70 67 68 276
T10 USA Patrick Reed -12 70 65 68 73 276
T13 ENG Luke Donald -9 69 72 68 70 279
T13 FRA Victor Dubuisson -9 72 67 69 71 279
T13 ENG Tyrrell Hatton -9 69 69 72 69 279
T13 ENG Chris Wood -9 68 70 69 72 279
T17 SWE Kristoffer Broberg -8 70 73 67 70 280
T17 DEN Thorbjorn Olesen -8 70 74 68 68 280
T17 SCO Richie Ramsay -8 71 70 68 71 280
T17 ENG Lee Slattery -8 76 71 68 65 280
T17 AUT Bernd Wiesberger -8 72 65 72 71 280
T22 THA Kiradech Aphibarnrat -7 73 65 73 70 281
T22 ESP Rafael Cabrera Bello -7 76 70 69 66 281
T22 ESP Alejandro Canizares -7 68 71 70 72 281
T22 ESP Pablo Larrazabal -7 69 72 72 68 281
T22 BEL Thomas Pieters -7 69 69 73 70 281
T22 ENG Justin Rose -7 71 66 78 66 281
T22 FRA Gary Stal -7 71 70 68 72 281
T22 USA Peter Uihlein -7 71 69 69 72 281
T22 ENG Anthony Wall -7 71 70 70 70 281
T31 DNK Lucas Bjerregaard -6 69 71 71 71 282
T31 THA Thongchai Jaidee -6 69 67 69 77 282
T31 NED Joost Luiten -6 69 72 68 73 282
T34 WAL Jamie Donaldson -5 70 71 71 71 283
T34 AUS Marcus Fraser -5 66 72 74 71 283
T34 IND Anirban Lahiri -5 73 67 72 71 283
T34 SCO Marc Warren -5 72 68 70 73 283
T38 FRA Gregory Bourdy -4 73 68 69 74 284
T38 SCO Stephen Gallacher -4 73 72 69 70 284
T38 SWE Alexander Noren -4 71 66 71 76 284
T38 RSA Louis Oosthuizen -4 73 68 70 73 284
T42 ENG David Howell -3 72 76 69 68 285
T42 ENG Ian Poulter -3 66 74 71 74 285
T42 RSA Jaco Van Zyl -3 72 70 70 73 285
T42 ENG Lee Westwood -3 71 70 74 70 285
T46 ENG Ross Fisher -2 69 73 71 73 286
T46 FRA Alexander Levy -2 74 71 73 68 286
T48 FRA Raphael Jacquelin -1 76 69 74 68 287
T48 ESP Miguel Angel Jimenez -1 68 74 72 73 287
T48 GER Maximilian Kieffer -1 71 71 71 74 287
T48 IRL Shane Lowry -1 75 70 69 73 287
T48 ENG Graeme Storm -1 73 72 71 71 287
T53 ENG Tommy Fleetwood Par 77 72 69 70 288
T53 SWE Rikard Karlberg Par 72 72 70 74 288
T53 FRA Julien Quesne Par 73 71 67 77 288
T56 AUS Scott Hend 1 77 69 74 69 289
T56 PAR Fabrizio Zanotti 1 68 73 73 75 289
58 ENG Eddie Pepperell 2 71 72 73 74 290
T59 ENG James Morrison 3 71 73 71 76 291
T59 SWE Henrik Stenson 3 77 69 72 73 291

 





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