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Vijay Singh closes in on No.1 spot again

Vijay Singh will return to No.1 next week

U.S. Masters champion Tiger Woods, whose record-breaking seven-year run of avoiding the halfway cut in tournaments ended last week, will lose his world number one ranking also by Sunday.

His closest rival, Fijian Vijay Singh, went on to finish tied third in the Byron Nelson Championship in Irving, Texas, behind winner Ted Purdy and closed the gap on Woods significantly.

Neither man is playing in this week's Colonial tournament in Fort Worth, Texas but, under the world rankings system which is based on previous results, Woods will lose more points than Singh and so slip narrowly behind him.

The pair have tussled for the top spot all season, each having enjoyed two spells as the game's leading player.

Singh climbed to number one for the first time with victory at the Deutsche Bank Championship last September, when he ended Woods's five-year reign at the top.

Nine-times major champion Woods has been in pole position since winning his fourth U.S. Masters crown at Augusta National last month but Singh won the Wachovia Championships a week ago to close in on the 29-year-old nine-time major champion.

Woods had gone 142 successive weeks at the top without missing a cut, breaking Byron Nelson's 54-year PGA Tour record of 113 weeks in November 2003.

Purdy climbed 104 places to 69th with his one-stroke win on Sunday and Denmark's Thomas Bjorn moved up seven places to 22nd with his playoff win at the Forest of Arden in England.

There is not a single change, however, in the top 10 with each retaining their ranking from the previous week.

South African Ernie Els stayed at world number three, Phil Mickelson, winner of last year's Masters, remained at four and U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen at five.

World ranking points are accumulated over a two-year period, with points awarded in the most recent 13-week spell doubled.

Each player is ranked according to his average points per tournament, points being weighted according to the status of the event and strength of the field.


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