Rory McIlroy showed Tiger Woods he’s still got a way to go before reclaiming the world’s No. 1 ranking.
McIlroy posted a 5-under par 67 to beat Woods by one stroke Monday in the “Duel at Jinsha Lake,” an 18-hole exhibition match in China between the top two players in golf. The result evens the head-to-head record between McIlroy and Woods at one match apiece.
“This is certainly not like most Mondays,” Woods said. “To have this many people come out and watch us play golf in an exhibition was something special. This doesn’t happen. As far as doing something like this down the road, it would be fun.”
McIlroy birdied two of the first three holes and never looked back against Woods, a 14-time major winner. Woods had two bogeys and six birdies to shoot a 68.
Woods received a reported $2-million appearance fee while McIlroy picked up a cool million.
McIlroy is close to wrapping up top spot on the European Tour’s money list — he’s got a $1.29 million lead with a handful of events remaining in the season — and has already clinched the PGA Tour’s order of merit. Luke Donald led both money lists last year.
The $1 million McIlroy got in China doesn’t count toward his season earnings, though.