Rory McIlroy's hopes of a final round flourish at the Farmers Insurance Open fell flat in La Jolla, California as he slipped off the pace on Sunday to finish outside the top-eight for only the third time in his last seven events.
The World No.7 finished the tournament, his first on the PGA Tour this year, with a one-over 73 on the South Course at Torrey Pines to finish the week at six-under, well adrift of eventual winner Patrick Reed.
McIlroy had pulled himself up the leaderboard with two late birdies on his front nine, however two bogeys to start his back nine left him too much to do, and a three-putt double-bogey at the 15th ended any hopes of a late charge towards the top.
Although McIlroy's wait for a win still stretches back to November 2019, it is another week where he has put himself in contention at the business end of a tournament, and the law of averages suggests his next triumph won't be long in coming, with the 31-year-old next in action at the Waste Management Phoenix Open in Arizona, which starts on Thursday.
This week will also have been a vital learning week for the Holywood ace ahead of June's US Open, which will be held at Torrey Pines, and will give him a fair degree of confidence that he can be in contention for a fifth Major title when he returns in the summer.
Meanwhile, the victory went to World No.11 Reed, who converted his overnight lead to hold off a star-studded chasing pack to claim his ninth PGA Tour victory.
The Texas native shot was composed in his final round and showed no signs of faltering to hold off the challenge of the likes of McIlroy, Viktor Hovland, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele and defending champion Jon Rahm, all of whom were in contention down the stretch.