By Bernie McGuire
It was as though Shane Lowry was running on the smell of an oily rag as he uncharacteristically battled his way to a no-frills share of 23rd place in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.
Lowry struggled from the outset in breaking 70 producing scores of 73, 70, 71 and a closing 70 for his three-under tally in four days of energy-sapping conditions at the Jumeirah Estate.
Just once before in his nine prior appearances on the Earth course has Lowry not broken 70 and that was in 2013 with rounds of 71, 71, 74 and 71 that handed him that year a share of 39th place.
This year’s finish ranks sixth best after the high of being runner-up in 2017 and his poorest of a 48th place showing two years earlier in 2015.
The BMW PGA champ teed-up Thursday lying eighth on the money list, with a mathematical chance, albeit very slim, of ending his season as the Tour’s No. 1.
It wasn’t to be with Lowry ending his 13th full season ninth on the money list, five places shy of his best season in finishing fourth in 2019.
Lowry and wife Wendy were heading home to their Florida abode ahead of Lowry’s final event of the season and that’s his debut appearance in the Tiger Woods hosted Hero World Challenge commencing on December 1st on the Albany course in the Bahamas.
“I found it a tough week and it’s not like me around here, not to break 70 in the week,” he said.
“I just struggled for the four rounds, and with my misses costing me and I would not normally do that.
“In saying that, Jon’s (Rahm) finished at 20-under so I’m just ready for a break so I am looking forward to the week off, and it’s only a very short flight from Florida to Nassau for Tiger’s event.”
On the European Ryder Cup qualifying points table Rory McIlroy has replaced Lowry in second place on the ‘Europe’ points table and Lowry down to third. Jon Rahm remains at No. 1.