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Stewart scratched from the official rankings

The name of U.S. Open champion Payne Stewart, who died in a plane crash last month, has been removed from the world golf rankings.

"It is now almost four weeks since the tragic death of Payne Stewart and it has been decided by the board that this is an appropriate time for his name to be withdrawn from the official world golf ranking," officials said in a statement on Monday.

It had earlier been announced that the position would be reviewed at the end of the year, there was no reason given why this was brought forward.

Stewart was ranked eighth in the world when his plane crashed on October 25.

Leading rankings (U.S. unless stated): 
1. Tiger Woods 20.30 points 
2. David Duval 13.15 
3. Colin Montgomerie (Britain) 10.04 
4. Davis Love III 9.51 
5. Ernie Els (South Africa) 8.29 
6. Nick Price (Zimbabwe)8.13 
7. Lee Westwood (Britain) 8.08 
8. Vijay Singh (Fiji) 7.75 
9. Phil Mickelson 6.65 
 10. Mark O'Meara 6.53 
 11. Sergio Garcia (Spain)6.35 
 12. Jim Furyk 6.29 
 13. Justin Leonard 6.27 
 14. Hal Sutton 6.11 
 15. Jesper Parnevik (Sweden) 5.40 
 16. John Huston5.35 
 17. Jeff Maggert 5.34 
 18. Fred Couples 5.20 
 19. Carlos Franco (Paraguay) 5.06 
 20. Miguel Angel Jiminez (Spain) 4.96