Rory McIlroy has defeated Xander Schauffele in a playoff to secure his 18th PGA Tour title and his third World Golf Championship event, the WGC HSBC Champions in Shanghai, taking his PGA Tour earnings beyond US$50 million in the process.

Schauffele needed to birdie the 72nd hole to force the playoff before McIlroy was able to birdie the first hole of extra time to take the title and the US$1,745,000 first prize.

McIlroy was unable to birdie the 72nd hole but a stunning approach to the same hole in extra time set up a two-putt birdie and the win.

Louis Oosthuizen had a piece of the lead at various stages throughout the final day but he was unable to hold off the playoff pair although finished on his own in third place and two shots  from the playoff.

Adam Scott finished as the leading Australian when he tied for 11th, producing yet another strong finishing round of 67.

With final Presidents Cup selections named in the next few days, Sungjae Im, Byeong Hun An and Patrick Reed have done their respective chances no harm with solid weeks.