Rory McIlroy was dealt a double blow with Luke Donald replacing McIlroy as World No. 1 and Justin Rose unseating the Irishman atop of the Race to Dubai following the final round of the BMW PGA Championship title.
Donald went back to the game’s best-ranked player for a fourth time in carding a last round 68 to win by four shots with a 15-under par tally.
Rose (70) and Scotland’s Paul Lawrie (66) shared second place on 11-under par.
Donald needed only to finish top-eight at Tour HQ to return to World No. 1 after first moving to the top of the rankings in capturing the flagship event last year.
It is also the first time in his 14-times pro winning career the 34-year old has successfully defended a title in either Europe or the States.
“I thought last year would be hard to top in going head-to-head with Lee (Westwood) and finally to get to that No. 1 world ranking,” said Donald.
“But I must say it’s pretty nice to walk down 18 this year with a four shot lead. So it’s very special to come back here because it is the biggest event we play on the European Tour.
“I played a very solid back nine to keep Justin (Rose) and Paul (Lawrie) at bay.
“But it wasn’t all that easy and looks can be deceiving. I certainly played very nicely this whole week and today was the most difficult day of the four in terms of pressure on me in trying to defend a two shot lead.
“I have never defended a title before. Justin played three out of four rounds very solid and I knew I had to be mistake free and fortunately I got it done.”
Rose’s second place result matched a similar effort in 2007 but on this occasion his Euro 390,850 prize cheque has taken him Euro 347,170 ahead of McIroy who had missed the cut with scores of 74 and 79.
Lawrie capped his round eagling Wentworth’s fourth where he drilled a 5-iron to five feet and knocked in the putt.
The Scot picked off birdies at the sixth, 11th and 12th holes and while dropping a shot at 13 he closed out in superb manner birding the 17th before sending a 4-iron at the last to just 12 feet behind the flag but leaving his eagle putt right in the jaws.
“I played good again, played solid tee to green, hit a lot of good shots missed a few putts out there, a lot of good ones that didn’t go in but that’s typical me, still moaning.
“You have to be happy to shoot 66 but maybe it should have been a few less.”
Lawrie’s result is his sixth top-10 since last December’s season-ending Dubai World Championship.
The effort has seen the 1999 Open Champion take his 2o12 earnings to Euro 1,185,693 and up six spots to fifth in the Race to Dubai.
But of more importance, Lawrie has jumped two places and is now second overall behind Rory McIlroy on the European Ryder Cup points table with Euro 1,933,398.
“It’s a nice position to be in, but the guy in fifth or sixth wins a couple of tournaments or the Open then he’ll go by me,” said Lawrie.
“But after the Match-Play last week things are back on, so I’m very much playing it one tournament at a time, playing hard as possible.
“So not for a second am I thinking it’s done yet as that’s the way it’s got to be. “