Graeme McDowell (Getty Images)
Graeme McDowell was pleased to progress to the last eight of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship after a 3 and 2 win over Shane Lowry.
The former US Open Champion recovered from losing the second hole to take five of the next seven against Rory McIlroy’s conqueror.
Lowry took the 15th after McDowell lost his drive then duffed a chip, but a par at the 16th was good enough to send him through to the quarter0final.
“With the possibility of another 18 holes this afternoon, I was very keen to get the match out of the way as soon as I could, especially when I was three and four up,” said the Northern Irishman.
“But Shane is a gritty competitor, very difficult to get the poker face on and really knuckle down and play Shane, being a good friend like he is.
“When he hit that pin with the flop shot on 13, I was licking my chops there thinking I had a chance to go five up with five to play, and all of a sudden I found myself down 16 and really not wanting to go down much past that.”
Australian Jason Day was next for McDowell after a speedy turnaround, and The Ryder Cup star was expecting a tough battle.
“I enjoy the mano a mano of match play and the idiosyncrasies that different players have,” he added.
“I've had a few players this week make me putt short ones, so I have no problem with that. I think I'd probably prefer to play Jason than Bubba - Bubba would have been playing a different golf course from me.
“At least I can play the same golf course as J.D. and hopefully playing the way I'm playing I have a chance to beat him.”