With a birdie on each of his final five holes of the DP World Tour Championship, Rory McIlroy recorded a two-stroke victory over Justin Rose, who set the course record five pairings earlier.
While McIlroy learned two weeks ago that he had already clinched the Race to Dubai title, the conclusion of the European Tour season was compelling nonetheless. He and Luke Donald entered the final round at the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates this week tied for the lead. The Englishman faded with a 1-under 71 to share third place with Charl Schwartzel. McIlroy wasn't faring much better as he was 1-under through 13 before running the table with birdies for the title. He posted 23-under 66-67-66-66=265, five clear of the duo at T3. Rose started the day tied for seventh, and then sandwiched an eagle with eight birdies for a 62 before signing for 21-under 267. "I saw Justin make a charge - I heard the cheers," McIlroy said afterward, "but to finish like that was great. I could not have wished for any better. To back up 2011 with another major and to be part of an unbelievable story at the Ryder Cup has made it an incredible year."