|McIlroy hits the ball out of the bunker on hole 13.|
Rory McIlroy won three of the last nine to beat Sang-Moon Bae 3&2, while Lee Westwood won 4&2 over Martin Laird.
If winning this year’s tournament, McIlroy or Westwood will take the number one place of Luke Donald – the defending champion of the tournament but eliminated in the first round.
The other semi-final match is an internal affair between two American golfers Hunter Mahan and Mark Wilson.
Mahan easily defeated Matt Kuchar with a score of 6 & 5, while Wilson won 4 & 3 against Peter Hanson.
According to BBC commentator Iain Carter, the match between McIlroy and Westwood is definitely the most attention-grabbing: “It’s going to be the semi-final we all want to see, but unfortunately it doesn’t decide the title.”
“Nevertheless, Westwood’s encounter with McIlroy is one of the biggest matches in WGC Matchplay history. Both are determined to win their first title in the tournament, plus move on to the number one spot in the world. But the biggest motivation for these two players is simply the desire to beat each other. McIlroy is improving round by round, while Westwood has maintained a consistent high form throughout the week.”
A successful two-yard putter gave McIlroy the lead on the first hole, but his poor serve on the 3rd, par 3, put the ball into the lake and allowed Bae to level the gap. . The same phenomenon repeats itself afterwards.
McIlroy – the defending US Open champion – took a birdier on the 8th hole to get ahead, but once again Bae re-balanced when he reached par to win on the 10th hole.
At this point, the level of the world’s number two golfer has spoken out to make a difference. McIlroy won 3 of the next 5 holes to create a clear difference and Bae officially admitted defeat after finishing the 16th hole – where the Korean golfer hit the ball into the sand hole.
|Westwood is having a chance to regain the number one spot that was lost more than a year ago.|
Westwood also completed the match on the 16th hole, but before that, it was inevitable that Laird would win on the first hole.
However, successive errors appeared in Laird’s play, causing the Scottish golfer to bogey on holes 6, 7, 9 and 10. Westwood thus easily had a 3-point advantage.
On hole 11 the gap was narrowed when Westwood needed three putters to get the ball into the hole, but it wasn’t long before the score was wide again as Laird hit the ball into the bunker and succumbed on hole 14. Impossible. Turning the tide in the remaining holes, Laird had to give up the ticket to the former world number one.
Both the semi-finals and final will take place on Sunday.