After dominating all week in Shanghai, Hideki Matsuyama stormed to the first World Golf Championship win for a Japanese player at the WGC-HSBC Champions.
The 24-year-old proved his worth in the world top 10 after a seven-shot landslide victory finishing at 23-under-par.
Matsuyama took a three-shot lead after day two with a superb 65 in testing conditions and maintained that margin through to Sunday and closed with a 66 at the Sheshan International Golf Club.
Heading into the final day, the Ehime-born star showed no signs of capitulating and posted a bogey-less card including six birdies to ensure he added to his two PGA Tour wins and seven Japan Golf Tour wins.
Even after finding the water on the 72nd hole of the event, Matsuyama was able to get up and down for par, showing the class and maturity that had seen him be so prolific all week.
Swede Henrik Stenson was joint with American Daniel Berger as Matsuyama’s closest rivals at 16-under-par. His placing means much more than second place, however, as he now leads the Race to Dubai rankings heading into the European Tour‘s final series.
Rory McIlroy kept himself in contention for the Race to Dubai title by finishing tied fourth with a final score of 15-under-par. Although, having recently withdrawn from the Turkish Airlines Open, there may be too much ground for the world number three to make up.
McIlroy found himself seven shots off the pace after day one with a one-under-par 71, but fought back with two 66s and a 70 to reach tied fourth place with Bill Haas.
Rickie Fowler, Ross Fisher and Francesco Molinari all finished in tied sixth at 14-under-par.
With his emphatic win in China, Matsuyama will rise from 10th to sixth in the Official World Golf Rankings, a just reward for a player in fine form.