Mat­suyama causes world rank­ing up­set

CityPress - - Sport - PULE MOKHINE pmokhine@city­press.co.za

The list of con­tenders in the race to lead the of­fi­cial golf rank­ings has un­der­gone a change with Hideki Mat­suyama becoming the first Ja­panese golfer to rank se­cond in the world.

Se­cond po­si­tion has tra­di­tion­ally been dom­i­nated by Amer­i­can play­ers.

Mat­suyama trails Amer­i­can Dustin John­son by 144.85 points, ac­cord­ing the statis­tics on the rat­ings.

The 25-year-old is also the first Ja­pan Golf Tour player to be placed so high on the of­fi­cial world golf rank­ings.

No Ja­panese or Asian golfer has un­til now oc­cu­pied a top-five rank­ing on the in­ter­na­tional list­ing.

Mat­suyama con­firmed his new po­si­tion by fin­ish­ing tied for se­cond at the US Open in Wis­con­sin two weeks ago.

The four-time PGA Tour and eight-time Ja­pan Golf Tour vic­tor started this year’s sea­son on a good note by win­ning the Phoenix Open at Tour­na­ment Play­ers Club in Scottsdale, Ari­zona, in Fe­bru­ary.

His win pro­pelled him to fifth on the global rank­ings.

Mat­suyama needs to be as con­sis­tent as pos­si­ble to main­tain the win­ning streak if he wants to over­take John­son on the leader­board.

For Mat­suyama to be num­ber one on the list­ing, he will have to win some of the forth­com­ing events on the PGA Tour, in­clud­ing the Bri­tish Open sched­uled for Royal Birk­dale in Eng­land, which starts on July 20.

He also has to snatch the World Golf Cham­pi­onship-Bridge­stone ti­tle at Fire­stone Coun­try Club in Ohio.

The four-day event, whose ti­tle will be de­fended by John­son, tees off on Au­gust 3.

PHOTO: NURPHOTO / GETTY IMAGES

MAK­ING HIS­TORY Hideki Mat­suyama has moved up to the se­cond spot of the global rank­ings

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