Rory McIlroy has added The European Tour Shot of the Month award to his January Player of the Month accolade for the bunker shot that guaranteed his maiden professional victory at the Dubai Desert Classic.
Coming down the 72nd hole the 19-year-old had put himself under immense pressure after a run of three bogeys had England’s Justin Rose breathing down his neck.
And the Ulsterman looked to have squandered his big chance when his third shot on the last found the intimidating bunker at the back of the green.
To make matters worse, and with his nerve about to be questioned, McIlroy was faced with a downhill escape with water ready to take care of anything caught slightly thin.
But, demonstrating the kind of touch that has elevated him into the world’s top-20, McIlroy’s response was a delicate stroke, which enabled the ball to release down to the hole where he completed a two-foot tap-in for par and, more importantly, victory.
Martin Kaymer took second place in the January Shot of the Month for his brilliant approach to the 18th green during the final round of the Dubai Desert Classic, while third place went to Retief Goosen for his albatross during the final round of the Joburg Open.
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