Rory McIlroy want the Volvo World Match Play to return to its knockout roots.

Not that was fun. Rory wins the 2006 West of Ireland at Rosses Point.The Holywood hotshot was hammered five up by Masters champion Angel Cabrera last week.

And while that would have seen him eliminated under the old formula in place for 43 years at Wentworth, he’s dead against the round robin format that confused fans watching the action in Spain.

Still in with a chance of winning the megabucks Race to Dubai, McIlroy said: “When a guy wins, that should be it. There is no motivation to keep going with the new format.

“I’d prefer to see it go back to the way it was before. If you win a match 3 and 2 that should be it.

“Guy lose interest after that, whether they are winning or losing.”

The new system forced players to continue to the 18th and McIlroy was a victim of that as Cabrera piled on the agony by winning the last two holes of their clash.

Australia's Robert Allenby, who beat Cabrera in the third place play-off after losing to Anthony Kim in the semi-finals, insisted that the new format is a great success.

He said: "I think this is a great format. I think this is the fairest way to play it. I think the greatest thing is you've got every player here until Friday night. Whereas in the past, you lose, you go home. And there's other times where some player has got a bye in the first round; that doesn't seem fair, just because you're higher-ranked, you get a buffer. 

"I believe this is the fairest way to do it. It doesn't matter who you play in your group. Whether I've got Lee Westwood or Jeev Milkha Singh or Stenson or Sergio or Martin Kaymer. It just doesn't matter who you play. But just to actually have the chance to play three matches is a great way to do it, it really is. 

Despite his exit, McIlroy still gained ground on Lee Westwood and Martin Kaymer in the Race to Dubai standings by finishing tied for fifth. Eventual champion Ross Fisher made a huge move in the money list by soaring from seventh to fourth.

And he reckons he can still become European No 1 with just three events to go as he's just €165,045 behind Westwood and only €64,408 adrift of German ace Kaymer with three events to go.

He said: “I have a big run coming up with the HSBC in China this week, the Hong Kong Open and the Dubai World Championship.

“It’s an important stretch but I feel as if I'm playing well enough to contend in all three.”

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are his biggest rivals in this week’s $5m (€3.3m) WGC - HSBC Champions in Shanghai where the winner will pocket a cool $833,300 (€562,500).

McIlroy is joined by Padraig Harrington and Irish Open champion Shane Lowry with Michael Hoey just second reserve.

The event is limited to the winners of selected tournaments around the world as well as the leading players from the world rankings or US money list not already qualified.

Harrington squeaked through the FedEx Cup rankings but Hoey’s win in the Estoril Open was considered a second class victory due to the weak field.

The top 60 in the Race to Dubai standings will qualify for the Dubai World Championship in two weeks.

So far McIlroy, Harrington, Graeme McDowell, Peter Lawrie, Gareth Maybin and  Damien McGrane are inside the top 60.

But Darren Clarke slipped to 62nd after a poor performance in the Singapore Open.

The Ulsterman can qualify through next week’s Hong Kong Open but Gary Murphy needs a stellar performance in his final event to save his card.

After missing the cut in Singapore he’s nearly €28,000 outside the top 115 and could need a top seven finish in the Australian Masters in two weeks to survive.