Westwood and McIlroy set up their showdown

 

Dove Mountain

No time to dawdle over the roast beef lunch. The dog will have to walk itself. And you may need to draw the curtains. This is going to be tasty. Settle back in your sofa for Rory McIlroy versus Lee Westwood. And this time, it's personal.

"It's the match I wanted. It's the match everybody else wanted. And I look forward to seeing him on the first tee," McIlroy said after seeing off Sang-Moon Bae 3&2. Westwood beat Scotland's Martin Laird 4&2.

Choose your weapon, gentlemen, please for the Gunfight at the UK Coral. There has been a frosty relationship bubbling beneath the surface between McIlroy and Westwood ever since last year's Masters. While McIlroy was suffering his Sunday meltdown, Westwood, some thought ungraciously, was not shy in pointing out that McIloy had a hook in his locker when he came under pressure. Many saw their clash of egos as one of the main reasons McIlroy left Chubby Chandler's stable earlier this year.

McIloy did his best to play down any suggestion that this will be a revenge duel in the desert. "We obviously don't spend as much time together as we used to and he is a rival, a guy who you have to beat, but it's totally fine. There's no ill feeling."

Westwood, too, said everything is fine and dandy but he didn't stop there. "Rory doesn't want to spend time with the people who manage me. And I don't want to spend time with the people who manage Rory," he said. Ouch. Take THAT.

One of them will have the chance to advance to the final and victory there will see them crowned World No 1. Westwood, of course, has already been at the summit. But for McIlroy it is uncharted territory. "The chance to go to No 1 gives the match a little bit of extra spice and edge," McIlroy said. As if there weren't enough already.

So much for Westwood's fast start plan. He lost the first hole to a Laird birdie to go behind for the first time in any match all week. He stayed stuck in neutral until the sixth when he went on a run of winning four out of the next five holes while only needing one birdie to sprint away to 3up. Laird was giving away holes to pars. The Scot pretty much punched himself out of the contest at the 14th needing three swipes to escape the sand – just a simple bunker.

McIlroy, however, got off to the perfect start. Which is just as well if you are going to dress like a tangerine. He peeled off a birdie but a bogey at the third left a nasty acid taste in his mouth. He can thank the eejit who yelled, "Get in the hole," as McIlroy sent his tee shot arcing towards the par three. It got in the hole, all right. The big one filled with water. Someone should have chucked the eejit into one of those prickly cholla bushes. Bae stayed in touch with McIlroy until the 10th but then the Northern Irishman began to put the squeeze on. Bae made a mess of the 14th and the match was over two holes later.

Meanwhile, the United States are guaranteed a representative in the final. Hunter Mahan plays Mark Wilson in the other semi-final. But no one will be watching, will they?

Arts and Entertainment
The first film introduced Daniel Radcliffe to our screens, pictured here as he prepares to board the train to Hogwarts for the first time.
booksHow reading Harry Potter helps children grow up to be gay-friendly
Sport
Frank Lampard will pass Billy Wright and equal Bobby Charton’s caps tally of 106 caps against
sportFormer Chelsea midfielder in Etihad stopgap before New York contract
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from Aladdin is performed at the Tony Awards in New York in June
theatreBrit producer Lythgoe makes kids' musical comedy a Los Angeles hit
Sport
Usain Bolt of Jamaica smiles and shakes hands with a competitor after Jamaica won their first heat in the men's 4x100m relay
sport
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Chancellor George Osborne, along with the Prime Minister, have been 'complacently claiming the economy is now fixed', according to shadow Chancellor Ed Balls
i100... which is awkward, because he is their boss, after all
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux play teeneage lovers in the French erotic drama 'Blue Is The Warmest Colour' - The survey found four times as many women admitting to same-sex experiences than 20 years ago
filmBlue Is The Warmest Colour, Bojack Horseman and Hobbit on the way
News
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleBenidorm actor was just 68
Arts and Entertainment
Preparations begin for Edinburgh Festival 2014
Edinburgh festivalAll the best shows to see at Edinburgh this year
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices