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No Europeans in the World Top 10 for first time

Europe has no player in the world's top 10 this week for the first time since the official rankings were introduced in 1986.

Ireland's Padraig Harrington, the continent's sole representative a week ago, dropped out after being a regular since he broke into the top 10 in November 2001 after winning the European Tour's season-ending Volvo Masters.

Harrington, yet to play a tournament this year, slipped one spot to 11, having been dislodged by former world number two Phil Mickelson.

Left-hander Mickelson, winner of the PGA Tour's Bob Hope Classic two weeks ago, returned at nine with 2001 U.S. PGA champion David Toms dropping two places to 10 in official rankings announced on Monday.

After Harrington, the next highest Europeans in this week's rankings were Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke, at 12, Sweden's Fredrik Jacobson, at 18, and Denmark's Thomas Bjorn, at 19.

Europe dominated the inaugural world rankings that were issued on April 6 1986, with Germany's Bernhard Langer at number one, Spaniard Severiano Ballesteros at two and Britain's Sandy Lyle at three.

The likes of Nick Faldo, Ian Woosnam, Jose Maria Olazabal and Lee Westwood have been regular top-10 players at intervals since then, with seven-times European number one Colin Montgomerie and Spain's Sergio Garcia the most recent.

However Briton Montgomerie and Garcia both dropped out of the world's top 10 early last year.

Tiger Woods, who skipped last week's PGA Tour event for the second year in a row, extended his run at number one for a record 235th consecutive week.

Vijay Singh, winner of the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on Sunday, remained at two, although he inched to within 3.08 points of Woods -- the narrowest margin between the American and the second-ranked player since the standings were revamped in September 2001.

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