World Match Play Championship: Graeme McDowell knocked out

Graeme McDowell
McDowell beat Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee in the final to win last year's World Match Play Championship

Defending champion Graeme McDowell failed to make the knock-out stages of the World Match Play Championship after a two-hole defeat by Joost Luiten.

Needing to finish in the top two of his four-man group, Northern Ireland's McDowell was three up after eight.

But Dutchman Luiten picked up three birdies in his final four holes to move into Saturday's quarter-finals.

Wales' Jamie Donaldson, who secured the winning Ryder Cup point, and Englishman Paul Casey also failed to progress.

World Match Play quarter-finals
Patrick Reed (US) v George Coetzee (SA)
Victor Dubuisson (Fra) v Mikko Ilonen (Fin)
Joost Luiten (Ned) v Pablo Larrazabal (Spa)
Henrik Stenson (Swe) v Jonas Blixt (Swe)

The 16 competitors, divided into four groups of four, played three matches each on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

The quarter-finals take place on Saturday, with the semi-finals and final to follow on Sunday.

After losing to Mikko Ilonen on Thursday, McDowell knew only a win over Luiten would definitely take him through.

Jonas Blixt and Paul Casey
Casey and Blixt both shot rounds of 10 under par

Birdies on the sixth, seventh and eighth took him three clear but they were level again by the 12th and Luiten secured the win with an impressive finish.

Luiten now faces Spaniard Pablo Larrazabal, while American Patrick Reed takes on South Africa's George Coetzee, Frenchman Victor Dubuisson meets Mikko Ilonen of Finland and Swedes Henrik Stenson and Jonas Blixt also face each other in the last eight.

Casey and Blixt halved their match, with both men shooting rounds of 62.

World Match Play day three results
Patrick Reed (US) beat Jamie Donaldson (Wal) 3&2
Jonas Blixt (Swe) halved with Paul Casey (Eng)
Stephen Gallacher (Sco) beat Victor Dubuisson (Fra) 2&1
Pablo Larrazabal (Spa) beat Shane Lowry (Ire) 2&1
Joost Luiten (Ned) beat Graeme McDowell (NI) 2up
Mikko Ilonen (Fin) beat Alexander Levy (Fra) 1up
Henrik Stenson (Swe) beat Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) 2&1
Francesco Molinari (Ita) beat George Coetzee (SA) 2&1

Level on points from their three matches, they went to extra holes to decide on the head to head who would progress from the Mark McCormack group in second place behind Patrick Reed.

But on the first, Casey put his approach shot into the water and Blixt won through with a par five.

Reed had already earned his place in the quarter-finals with a 3&2 victory over Welshman Donaldson.

World number five Stenson, the highest ranked player left in the tournament, holed with his approach shot on the 17th to ensure his progress with a two-hole win over Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee.

Full results and standings.

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