Ian Poulter is back in the world's top 10 for the first time in 25 months - but not in the way he wanted.
Europe's Ryder Cup hero failed to make it into the final of the Accenture Match Play Championship in Tucson, losing 4&3 to defending champion Hunter Mahan. It meant a seventh all-American final in the event's 15-year history, with Matt Kuchar beating Australian Jason Day by the same margin in the other semi-final.
"It's easy to get up for Ian because he's so good at match play," Mahan said. "I played really well. I was getting up and down from a lot of tough spots."
Winner of the title three years ago, Poulter was also trying to make it back-to-back World Golf Championship victories after his triumph at the HSBC Champions in Shanghai last November.
He had beaten Stephen Gallacher, Bo Van Pelt, Tim Clark and Steve Stricker to reach the last four, but Mahan has not trailed in any game since the first round last year and that remained the case going into the clash with his 2010 Ryder Cup teammate Kuchar.