I might have a PhD in a fairly technical discipline the World Golf Rankings never cease to baffle me. Now I’m not about to launch into a lecture on how they work, please allow me instead to let off a little steam about them. It’s less a case of “go out and play well” to rise up the rankings and more a case of “rest well” and you might find yourself at No. 1!
That was exactly the scenario last week at the Ballantine’s when world no.1 Lee Westwood (playing) needed a strong finish in South Korea to stay ahead of Martin Kaymer (not playing). It’s almost like saying you can earn more money on the dole than by doing an honest days work!
So Westwood didn’t just have to worry about Miguel Angel Jimenez during his final round in Korea. Kaymer was putting pressure on him from his armchair in Germany by virtue of how his divisor chugs out points in a complex two year maths equation.
So daft are the rankings that Rory McIlroy, who was playing a five a side game with friends on his new astro pitch, overtook Tiger Woods (icing his knee) in the rankings last Sunday night, because of what was going on behind them! As it turns out McIlroy would have passed Woods anyway in the coming weeks irrespective of what either on them did. What’s written in the rankings shall come to pass!
Tiger Woods might be ridiculed in some quarters for not playing as many events as other but while he’s off for covering himself in baby oil as he slips down the rankings consider this. The last year Woods played a full season of 17 events was in 2009, and the scoring average for the courses he chose to play on was approximately 72, almost 1 ½ strokes higher than the scoring average for the 35 other courses used on Tour that year.
The point? The official world golf rankings are about as useful an indicator of the best players in the world as a one legged man in an arse kicking competition!