The Week That Was | 25 – 31 October 2010on November 1, 2010
The big news in golf last week was the eminent fall of Tiger Woods from the number one spot on the Official World Rankings. Over the weekend PGA Champion Martin Kaymer did have a chance to replace Woods at the top of the rankings, but he had to finish either in first or second place on his own in the Andalucía Valderrama, and when the German failed, Lee Westwood became the 13th number one since the ranking system was put in place almost 25 years ago. The Englishman is only the fourth player to climb to this lofty position without a Major Championship to his name. Woods has occupied the position as the best golfer in the world for more than five years – 281 weeks to be exact. Westwood will be competing at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City in the 30th Nedbank Golf Challenge, and assuming that he can stay on top, he will be first number one to be seen in action in this premier, $5 million tournament for some 10 years since Ernie Els and Nick Price were ranked on top of the world.
In the most important amateur team and individual events; the World Team Championships and the Eisenhower, the French team were surprise winners finishing on 7-under par. The event, played in Argentina, saw a disappointing performance by the South Africa team. The SA trio, fancied to actually win the tournament, finished in 20th place, a distant 25 shots behind the Tricolours. Danish player Joachim Hansen, a member of the team that finished as runners-up, won the individual Eisenhower Trophy, and the star of the South African team, Dylan Fritelli, failed to find his form and languished way down the leaderboard in 114th place.
In the star-studded field competing in the Asia Pacific Classic, Ben Crane, a former PGA Champion, prevailed and earned $1 million. Two players that we will be in Sun City for the Nedbank Golf Challenge, Ernie Els and defending champion Robert Allenby, shot final rounds of 66 and 64 respectively, and finished in the top-10.
In the Race to Dubai, Graeme McDowell, claimed his third victory of the season in the Andalucía Valderrama event, taking his season’s earning to more than € 2.8 million and closing the gap on Martin Kaymer. This victory also took the Irishman’s career earnings over the € 9 million mark.
On the European Women’s Tour, Lee-Ann Pace continued her scintillating form and won the Suzhou Taihu Ladies Open in a playoff – the South African who turned professional five years ago, has now won five trophies in as many months, and after adding the €30,000 first prize to her season’s earnings, she dominates the LET’s moneylist.
We have been told that later this week there will be another announcement concerning the Nedbank Golf Challenge – watch this space.