McIlroy beats Sullivan at the post; Lahiri 34th
Anirban Lahiri was just getting off his roller-coaster ride, as Rory McIlroy was moving into the cruise mode in the final round of the DP World Tour Championships, also the last day of the 2015 European Tour season. Lahiri rounded off his maiden appearance at the Grand Finale with a birdie, but a ‘none-too-happy’ 71 that saw him finish the week in the Tied-34th place at five-under 283.
McIlroy at that stage was walking off the fourth green and still a long way away from his second DP World Tour title and the third Race to Dubai European Tour honours. Starting the day one behind early tournament leader, Andy Sullivan of England , the Northern Irishman, fell three behind by the time the lead pair arrived at the fifth tee.
The leaders were head-to-head with birdies from both on the fifth and sixth, and then McIlroy went off on his own with a birdie on seventh. And Sullivan bogeyed the eighth.Even as the magical qualities of Sullivan’s putter disappeared, they never seemed to have been better in McIlroy’s putter. Sullivan had just one more birdie on the par-4 11th, while McIlroy screamed past with four birdies between 11th and 15th to steer two shots clear.
There was yet another twist, as McIlroy took a trip into the water off the tee on the tricky 17th. Once again McIlroy summoned all his experience and drained a 40-footer which he later called as “the best bogey putt of my career”. That did reduce his own lead to one, but it also took away the sting from Sullivan’s final challenge. McIlroy (66) totaled 21-under 267 and Sullivan (68), after leading for most of four days, was second at 20-under 268. But Sullivan was alevel with McIlroy on at least one count – they were the only ones to win three times each on European Tour this year.