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McIlroy hits a 67 to edge out Woods by one shot in The Match at Mission Hills

2013-10-29

Mission Hills witnessed a remarkable golf event on Monday, Oct. 28th. Dubbed as the "The Match at Mission Hills", it was a play off between two golf superstars – Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. This megabucks exhibition match was exclusively tailored for the two golf legends and was a treat for all golf enthusiasts. Everyone waited with bated breath to see who would emerge the winner in this duel. After a 4-hour match, covering 18 holes, it was Rory McIlroy who managed to edge out the top-ranked golfer in the world, Tiger Woods by 1 single stroke, shooting a six-under par round of 67.

The two golfing legends also took time to participate in a skills demonstration with young Chinese prodigy Guan Tianlang. The 17-year-old Guan surprised everyone by getting the highest scores in the challenge match, beating both golf superstars. "The Match at Mission Hills” was a head-to-head 18-hole challenge between the world’s top ranking Tiger Woods and former world number one Rory McIlroy, in the tropical Hainan island in China. The match was popularly referred to as a showdown of power between the "King of Golf" and the "Prince of Golf". McIlroy has played excellently with eight birdies, except for a double bogey at the 5th hole. Though Woods was defeated by a single stroke, he showcased a stable play with five birdies and zero bogey.

McIlroy was very excited at his victory, "A lot of people came to watch this game, so this feels really good. We both hit many birdies in the last 9 holes, and the eagle pushed the game to a fitting climax. I’m very happy to win the Match at Mission Hills, even though it was by just 1 stroke. After all, playing with Tiger Woods is always great." The two time Grand Slam winner frankly admitted that he really liked the one-on-one match. McIlroy continued, "This is my second time at Mission Hills Haikou. Be it the course or the facilities, I’m very impressed, especially when I heard that there are two courses open for free for young golfers under 16 years to practice. I'm quite moved. This will be very beneficial to promote the development of junior golf."

Woods, who lost by one shot to McIlroy, was a good sport at today's showdown, "It is really a great day, we both played intensely, but we also had a lot of fun."

Although this is his first visit to Hainan Island, Woods has played many times in the other courses of Mission Hills. The 14 times Grand Slam winner received a rousing welcome by the local audience. Woods said: "I have often come to China to play since 2001, but this time for the Match at Mission Hills, I realized that China has great potential for golf development, especially now that golf has become an Olympic event for the 2016 Olympics. Mission Hills Haikou has very good courses, and two of them are open to junior golfers under the age of 16 for free. Mission Hills has spared no effort in promoting junior golf in China. I think their approach is worth learning and should be followed by the whole world."

On the match day, Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy made time to participate in the teaching activities of Chinese national golf team and youth team and present awards to 4 youth golfers wining champion in Mission Hills Youth Series Match. In the Youth Series Match, Li Yuan won the champion of less than 18 years old male’s group, and Wang Mei won the champion of the female’s group. Yang Tiliang won the champion of less than 15 years old male’s group and Liu Yiyi won the champion of the female’s group.