Golf: McIlroy in good shape in Dubai

(AFP) - Rory McIlroy will go into the final round of the US$8 million (S$11.3 million) DP World Tour Championship in Dubai just one shot off leader Andy Sullivan after a seven-under 65 yesterday.

The Northern Irishman is desperate to finish a frustrating and injury-marred season on a high and the world No. 3 is also on the verge of winning the Race to Dubai.

He could make it a double today if he can overcome the challenge of Englishman Sullivan, who managed to retain a one-shot lead on top of the leaderboard with a 68.

Sullivan was at 200, while McIlroy's best round in seven visits to the Earth course of Jumeirah Golf Estates took him to 201.

American Patrick Reed was third, two shots behind McIlroy after a 68.

Emiliano Grillo of Argentina (71) and Byeong Hun An (66) of South Korea were tied for fourth on 204.

The battle for the Race to Dubai crown remains a tight one with England's Danny Willett, who started the tournament just 1,613 points behind McIlroy, remaining within striking distance at 205 after a 67.

Willett was tied for sixth place along with Matthew Fitzpatrick (68) of England and Thongchai Jaidee (69) of Thailand.

Willett responded in fine fashion to McIlroy putting up all the red numbers on the board by making a birdie on the par-five 14th, an eagle on the par-four 15th - where he sank a 30-foot putt after driving the green - and then a regulation birdie on the 18th.

McIlroy's only bogey of the day came on the par-four 12th where he found the fairway bunker with his drive. But he bounced back with three birdies in a row after that.

World No. 5 Justin Rose, in with a chance to win the Race to Dubai if he won the tournament, shot himself out of contention with a 78.