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Tiger Woods wins again and climbs to world no. 21
December 5, 2011

Tiger Woods won the Chevron World Challenge, no longer an "Invitational" Event, but a tournament whose field is determined based on the entrants' Official World Ranking on September 18th 2011, all of whom were in the World Top 50 at that time. In fact going into the tournament Woods was the lowest ranked player in the field of 18 players at World Number 52. A birdie on the final hole gave the former World Number One a one stroke win over his playing partner Zach Johnson and with it Woods climbs up to World Number 21.

Rory McIlroy not only picked up the UBS Hong Kong Open on Sunday, but by holing out from the sand at 18 for birdie and the win, he also kept alive his dream of catching World Number One Luke Donald on both the Official World Golf Rankings and the European Tour’s Race to Dubai. The Northern Irishman started three back of overnight leader Alvaro Quiros, who would fall to a Sunday 73, while McIlroy accelerated through the field and into the driving seat with four birdies in the bag heading down the last. He found sand short of the green, but a miraculous effort from the trap saw the ball land softly and bang on line, rolling dead weight into the cup for the win. The victory is his second on The European Tour this year – after his thrilling Congressional triumph at The US Open – and sees him solidify his second place on the Official World Golf Ranking.

World Number Three Lee Westwood kept pace with the man directly above him in the ranking – the aforementioned McIlroy – with a stunning Saturday 62 setting up a two shot victory and title defence at the Nedbank Golf Challenge. Westwood was in imperious form in the third round with ten birdies and no dropped shots seeing him take a seemingly unassailable seven stroke lead atop the board and set a new course record. Sunday did not serve up quite so many fireworks for the Englishman, but a one over 73 was enough in the final round to still see him win by a couple from Sweden’s Robert Karlsson. The Englishman remains third on the ranking, a narrow 0.06 points behind Rory McIlroy and over a point clear of Germany’s Martin Kaymer in fourth.

Hiroyuki Fujita shot a Sunday best 64 en route to playoff victory and a successful title defence over fellow countryman, and overnight leader, Toru Taniguchi at the Golf Nippon Series JT Cup. It is the eleventh win of the 42 year olds career on the Japan Golf Tour, and sees him climb up 16 places on in the World and into 71st place.

Australia’s Brad Kennedy triumphed at the BMW New Zealand Open in a playoff over fellow countryman and golfing stalwart Craig Parry. Kennedy started the day some three shots clear of the pack, but when Parry got off to a fast start it was the overnight leader who had to dig deep to stay in the hunt. However he did just that, and when he made birdie at the first extra hole it was enough to take his second title on the Australasian Tour. His reward is not only a much coveted trophy, but also a leap of 82 places up the Official World Golf Ranking, and firmly inside the top 200 at 146.

Home hero José Cóceres went wire to wire to win by four at the 24th Torneo de Maestros Copa Personal 2011 on the Tour de las Americas. Having spent much of 2011 away from the game apparently chopping wood and baking bread, the one-time PGA and European Tour winner rediscovered some old form en route to the title. The victory could potentially reignite the 48 year old Argentine’s career, and sees him re-enter the Official World Golf Ranking at 760th.


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