Robert Rock held off the challenge from US Open Champion Rory McIlroy to claim victory at the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship.

At the start of the final round it looked like it was going to be a titanic battle between Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Robert Rock for the title. But 14-time Major winner Woods was never able to recover from a pair of consecutive bogeys mid-way through the round.

Which left just Rock and McIlroy to duke it out for the trophy and the Englishman came out on top.

Only 117th in the Official World Golf Ranking at the start of the week, Rock said after his one stroke triumph over McIlroy: "I really can't believe I have done that today."

"I was just very happy to be playing with Tiger. That's a special honour in itself."

While he shot a two under par 70 to finish 13 under, Woods scrambled his way to a 72 and instead of recording a second successive victory on the comeback trail had to settle for a share of third place with Graeme McDowell and Thomas Björn.

"I was just a touch off," said Woods.

"But Robert played great. He made a couple of key up-and-downs and a couple of beautiful iron shots down the stretch."

McIlroy's final-round 69 left the Irishman one shot short of earning a playoff despite Rock needing to take a penalty drop on the last.

South African performance

George Coetzee was the best of the South Africans, sharing sixth on 10 under, and Keith Horne was a further shot back. James Kingston tied for 17th with Charl Schwartzel on 6-under after a disappointing final-round 74, Jaco van Zyl was another shot back on 5-under.

Thomas Aiken finished 1-under, while Michiel Bothma, Jbe Kruger, Branden Grace and Hennie Otto all unfortunately missed the cut.

Player Score
Abu Dhabi Official Scores
Robert Rock -13
Rory McIlroy -12
Thomas Bjorn -11
Graeme McDowell -11
Tiger Woods -11
George Coetzee -10
Mattero Manassero -10
Keith Horne -9
Paul Lawrie -9
Francesco Molinari -9