A six-time champion, Els didn't lead until the 25th hole Saturday against Henrik Stenson of Sweden, but the South African then rolled to a 3-and-2 victory at Wentworth. Cabrera never trailed Hunter Mahan, but faced a fight from the American before winning 2 and 1.
Stenson, who won the Accenture Match Play Championship in Arizona in February, said he was defeated by Els' improved putting.
"I gave some holes away in the morning and then he came out strong in the afternoon and putted great," Stenson said.
Cabrera won three of the first four holes in the afternoon. Hunter then rallied from six down, winning four of the next six holes with good putting. But Cabrera won the 29th and stayed in control the rest of the way.
"He was just a little better and I've had a great week," Mahan said.
Cabrera, the 2007 U.S. Open winner, is trying to follow in the footsteps of Michael Campbell. He won the 2005 U.S. Open and then added the Match Play title.