Rory McIlroy says number one spot 'inevitable' if he maintains form

Rory McIlroy is optimistic that he won't have to wait long to become the world number one despite missing out on the top ranking on Sunday.

Defeat by Hunter Mahan in Sunday's WGC Match Play final prevented McIlroy from taking the number one spot.

"Getting to the top of world rankings is hopefully inevitable if I keep playing the way I am at the moment," said the 22-year-old.

McIlroy is next in action at this week's Honda Classic in the US.

The Northern Irishman will have another chance to dethrone current number one Luke Donald at the Florida event although he will need to win the tournament.

Donald is not competing at the Honda event.

"I have the Honda and Doral events coming up and hopefully I can put some good results up on the board and try and get a few wins," added McIlroy.

McIlroy produced sublime golf to fight back from three down after four to beat Lee Westwood in the morning semi-final but then appeared to suffer a reaction in the final as he fell four down after 10 against Mahan.

Despite a brave battle by McIlroy on the back nine, the American held on to take a deserved 2&1 victory.

"This is no disrespect to the guys in the other semi-final Hunter and Mark [Wilson] but to me it [the semi-final against Westwood] it was like my final in a way.

"That was the one I wanted all week and I got it.

"That's what I got myself up for. Maybe mentally and emotionally, it did take a little bit out of me.

"[But] It doesn't take away from the fact that Hunter played very, very solid golf [in the final]."

Mahan says he knows full well that McIlroy will top the rankings "sooner or later".

"Deep down I wanted to postpone that crowning of the number one player in the world for Rory," joked Mahan.

"He'll get there. He's phenomenal, he's really talented. He'll be number one eventually."

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