WGC Match Play: Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy go through

Lee Westwood

WGC Match Play

Venue:
Ritz-Carlton GC, Dove Mountain, Arizona
Date:
22-26 February

Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy remain on course to claim the world rankings top spot at the WCG Match Play after reaching the third round in Arizona.

Westwood beat Sweden's Robert Karlsson 3&2 to set up a meeting with Nick Watney, who defeated Tiger Woods 1 up.

World number three Westwood, who was knocked out by Watney in 2010 and 2011, said: "It's a chance to get revenge."

McIlroy faces Spaniard Miguel Angel Jimenez in the last 16 after seeing off Anders Hansen 3&2 at Dove Mountain.

The Northern Irishman, who is second in the world rankings, leads the chase to overhaul Luke Donald - beaten in the first round - at the top of the standings, and he or Westwood will become world number one if either wins this tournament.

Englishman Westwood was five clear after 10 holes and seemingly cruising to victory over Karlsson, but made a mess of the 11th and was pegged back further when the Swedish Ryder Cup player chipped in for an eagle at the 583-yard 13th.

Westwood was in the desert scrub again off the tee at the driveable 15th and Karlsson did not even have to putt to reduce the deficit to two holes.

However, Westwood's par on the short 16th was good enough when Karlsson failed to get up and down from a bunker.

Northern Irishman McIlroy reached the turn one up against Denmark's and went further ahead on 14 when he chipped in. The next two holes were halved, sealing the US Open champion's passage into the third round.

Woods, however, missed a makeable birdie putt on the final green that would have taken his match with Watney to an extra hole.

"I had an opportunity, but something I fought all day was blocking my putts and I blocked that one [at 18]," said Woods, who won the event in 2003, 2004 and 2008.

Watney admitted Woods "didn't putt like we are all used to seeing him putt".

Martin Laird and Paul Lawrie will meet in an after completing memorable wins.

Laird, who is based in Arizona, carded eight birdies in a highly impressive 2&1 victory over 18-year-old Italian Matteo Manassero, while Lawrie edged Japan's Ryo Ishikawa 1 up.

Robert Rock failed to repeat his excellent first-round performance against world number eight Adam Scott, going down 3&2 to American Mark Wilson.

Second round results (US unless stated, UK players in bold):

Steve Stricker beat Louis Oosthuizen (South Africa) 1 up

Hunter Mahan beat Yang Yong-eun (South Korea) 5&3

Dustin Johnson beat Francesco Molinari (Italy) 7&5

Paul Lawrie (Scotland) beat Ryo Ishikawa (Japan) 1 up

Martin Laird (Scotland) beat Matteo Manassero (Italy) 2&1

Mark Wilson beat Robert Rock (England) 3&2

John Senden (Australia) beat Jason Day (Australia) 6&5

Matt Kuchar beat Bubba Watson 3&2

Lee Westwood (England) beat Robert Karlsson (Sweden) 3&2

Peter Hanson (Sweden) beat Ernie Els (South Africa) 5&4

Bae Sang-moon (South Korea) beat Charl Schwartzel (South Africa) 1 up

Martin Kaymer (Germany) beat David Toms 2 up

Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland) beat Anders Hansen (Denmark) 3&2

Nick Watney beat Tiger Woods 1 up

Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spain) beat Keegan Bradley 2&1

Brandt Snedeker beat Kyle Stanley 2&1

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