Rory McIlroy warmed up for the Ryder Cup in sublime fashion after winning the Tour Championship to claim the Fedex Cup, following a dramatic play-off victory over American Ryan Moore. The Northern Irishman warmed up for the Ryder Cup by claiming his second PGA Tour title in three weeks and beating Dustin Johnson to the $10m [£7.7m] prize in Atlanta.
McIlroy was tied with Moore and Kevin Chappell on 12-under after a fourth round 64 at East Lake, after Johnson had relinquished the lead and his place at the summit of the Fedex Cup standings. Chappell was eliminated after the first play-off hole, when McIlroy missed a putt for eagle before a 15-footer saw him eventually prevail over Moore – who was rewarded for his display by being named as the final wildcard in the USA Ryder Cup team.
McIlroy, the four-time major champion, began the week sixth in the overall rankings but trailed by three with three holes remaining, before an eagle from his approach on 16 in regulation play sparked his challenge into life. His first Fedex success comes less than a week before the start of the Ryder Cup and represents just the third title of an otherwise bleak 2016 season.
"Just an incredible day," he told Sky Sports. "Playing with Ryan, that definitely helped. We got some momentum and had to keep it going. I knew I needed something special. I was trying to finish three-three-four. When the second shot went in on 16 I knew I was back in the tournament. Kevin gave us one with a bogey on 17.
"I made it difficult for myself. I could have closed it out on the first hole but I knew I had to stay patient and knew if I kept hitting good shots my chance would come. I play my best golf when I am in these positions. It has taken me a while to figure it out.
"Earlier on in my career I wouldn't have classed myself as one of the best closer or finisher of tournaments but now I feel like I play my best when I am under the most pressure. For me this year it has been about getting myself in that positon and when I have I have been able to let my game shine.
"I can't wait to do this all over again next week. If you had asked me at the start of the week do you want the Fedex Cup or the Ryder Cup, I would have said both. I am one step towards that and now we go next week and try and get the other one. I can't wait to join up with the guys tomorrow and get into the team spirit. I'm on a real high and I hope this win can give the team some momentum going into the matches."