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McIlroy shares lead but Woods and Garcia are in close attendance

| 12.02.2011

It may still be eight weeks until the first Major of the year, but Sunday’s final round in Dubai is shaping up to be a preview of the final round of the Masters.

Finally Sergio Garcia has rediscovered his form and had it not been for a triple bogey at the 17th, the Spaniard would be in pole position ahead of the Dubai Desert Classic final round.

Instead Rory McIlroy, despite a horror third round that included five bogeys, shares top spot with Anders Hansen and Thomas Aiken at 8-under, and the mercurial Ulsterman is the 5/2 favourite to win on Sunday.

But preparing to pounce just one shot adrift of McIlroy is the finest golfer of this generation, and Tiger Woods is a very tempting 7/2 second favourite to end his 16-month search for a tournament win.

Garcia is level with Woods at 7-under, and the Spaniard is 10/1 to win tomorrow and continue his recovery from two awful years which has seen the Spaniard slip to 72 in the world rankings.

McIlroy’s co-leaders Hansen and Aiken are both available at 8/1 to win on Sunday and Hansen will resume playing with Woods tomorrow after outscoring the world number three today.

Lee Westwood is three shots off the lead and certainly in contention tomorrow, the world number one is available at 16/1 to win in a tournament that sees 17 players all within three shots of the co-leaders.

No doubt about it, the final day of the Dubai Desert Classic will be one of the highlights of the golfing calendar and with plenty of golfers in contention, there’s plenty of value to be found for punters.

But there would be nothing better than watching Woods and McIlroy fight it out and the Ulsterman can announce himself as the pretender to Woods’ throne with the win in his beloved Dubai.

A £25 stake on McIlroy winning the Dubai Desert Classic would return £87.50. New customers can sign up here for a free bet worth £25.



Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.