Absent at La Quinta, Rory McIlroy could give up his world number 1 throne to two players. There is even a unique scenario where both contenders end up with exactly the same number of points! The performances of Scottie Scheffler and Patrick Cantlay will be very popular this week in California.
Engaged in The American Express on the 3 courses of the PGA West of La Quinta, the two players ranked today respectively 2nd and 5th can seize the place of world n°1… But according to the Irish world ranking specialist who rages as Nosferatu on Twitter, there is an incredible possibility that would see Scheffler and Cantlay reach the same number of points and thus share the throne.
Obviously, this would be a first in the history of this classification in force since 1986. If Cantlay finishes 1st and Scheffler finishes 8th alone then the two Americans can claim to be the best player in the world but tied!
Rory McIlroy would then find himself demoted to third place and Jon Rahm, also present this week in California, would retain his current 4th place. Note that if last-minute withdrawals occur, the quality of the field and therefore the number of points involved would be affected and the scenario of a perfect tie would become unachievable.
Finally, the new world ranking calculation system based on the quality of the field of players will still be open to criticism. Indeed, while Cantlay, 5th in the world rankings, can take the throne, this will not be the case for the one who has preceded him since Monday, the Spaniard Jon Rahm.
Even a ninth victory on the PGA Tour this week will not allow the Basque, very upset against the new calculation algorithm, to become world No. 1 again, whereas with the old system he could have claimed to sit again in the top of the hierarchy.
The ranking was created in 1986, at the initiative of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews (R&A) and was intended to have an objective system to determine the players who would receive invitations to the British Golf Open.
Until the late 1970s, there was a clear dominance in world golf by the players who participated in the PGA Tour (mainly North Americans). However, the 1980s brought with it a revival of European golf, led by figures such as Severiano Ballesteros, Bernhard Langer, Sandy Lyle and Nick Faldo, among others.
Similarly, international players like Greg Norman, Nick Price or Isao Aoki also competed successfully against PGA Tour players. As a result of the above, it was not clear to the R&A how to weigh the results obtained by players on different tours, especially considering that, at that time, the four majors were the only instances in which players from different tours used to face each other.
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