Rain forces postponement of World Golf Finals



Rain forces postponement of World Golf FinalsBelek (Turkey): The anticipated showdown between Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods at the World Golf Finals on Wednesday was pushed back a day because of thunderstorms at the Sultan course.

Torrential rain began lashing Antalya Golf Club shortly after the morning matches in the eight-player event were completed, forcing organizers to postpone the four afternoon matches to Thursday with the semifinals staged afterward.

The other abandoned matches were: Justin Rose vs. Webb Simpson, Lee Westwood vs. Hunter Mahan and Charl Schwartzel vs. Matt Kuchar.

On Wednesday, Schwartzel birdied three of his last four holes to shot a 1-under 70 to McIlroy`s 71.

``You can`t really do much about that,`` said McIlroy, adding: ``I played bit a better than yesterday.``

Woods recorded his first victory at the exhibition tournament with a 67 to defeat Kuchar by five strokes. Woods fell to Schwartzel by one shot on Tuesday.

The top-ranked McIlroy has only an outside chance of advancing in the $5.2 million event after losing by six shots to Kuchar on Tuesday and by one stroke to Schwartzel in the medal match-play format.

``In my match now against Tiger, I will be out to get back a bit of pride and at least leave here winning one match,`` McIlroy said. ``I now don`t have much to play for, so I would like to beat him so he doesn`t go through to the semifinals and also to get some bragging rights.

``There is always an added edge when you play against a player like Tiger, and there were a few chances this year when we could have gone head-to-head in the bigger tournaments but it didn`t quite happen. So I am still looking forward to next season when we can go head-to-head down the stretch - and bragging rights from this week will help a little bit.``

Victory for McIlroy over Woods would bring him USD 450,000 in prize money. Even a loss to the 14-time major winner will carry a USD 300,000 check.

In other morning matches, Rose defeated Westwood with a round of 66 to his European Ryder Cup teammate`s 69. Simpson, the US Open champion, had a 65 to Mahan`s 67 for his first victory, leaving his fellow American winless.

The event is sponsored by Turkish Airlines, with the winner earning USD 1.5 million.

Agencies