Rory McIlroy has secured his first ‘win’ of 2013, beating Tiger Woods by one shot in an 18-hole exhibition match in China.
The former World No.1 produced a barnstorming finish to nail Woods by a stroke in the lucrative event at Mission Hills.
He shot a six-under par round of 67 – including four birdies and an eagle in the closing seven holes – to match his one-shot win over Woods in last year’s clash at Jinsha Lake.
“He schooled me twice,” Woods told the crowd afterward, according to Reuters.
“Well, I don’t know about that,” McIlroy replied. “I beat you by one shot twice.”
The pair played some spectacular golf on the back-nine at the Blackstone Course with matching eagles and three birdies apiece after the turn.
McIlroy will be hoping to retain some of that form when he heads to Shanghai later this week for the WGC Champions event, admitting he “needs a good week” to qualify for the Race to Dubai.
Woods will return to action next week at the Turkish Airlines Open.
Reports estimate that McIlroy will be paid $1.5 million (£930,000) for his appearance at the made-for-TV event in China, with Woods earning more than $2 million (£1.24 million).
If you could pick two players – from any era – to watch in an 18-hole exhibition match, who would they be? Join in the discussion by posting a comment below.