Tiger Woods finds himself at epicentre of latest LIV Golf row: "Utter absurdity"

Tiger Woods jumped up 430 places in the Official World Golf Rankings after his PGA Tour return at the Hero World Challenge.

Ben Smith's picture
Tue, 5 Dec 2023
Tiger Woods finds himself at epicentre of latest LIV Golf row: "Utter absurdity"

Tiger Woods made an enormous leap in the Official World Golf Rankings after completing his first competitive 72 holes of golf in seven months.

Woods, 47, finished 18th in the 20-man field at his own PGA Tour event in the Bahamas over the weekend. 

He had sunk to an all-time career-low of 1,328th in the rankings but has now jumped up a mammoth 430 spots after his exploits in Albany. 

Every participant at the Hero World Challenge was there by virtue of an invitation from the 15-time major champion. 

Scottie Scheffler emerged as the champion to mark his first victory since the 2023 Players. 

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A fresh debate emerged about the validity of the OWGR after the American earned 30 world ranking points for the win in what is considered an exhibition event in golf's 'silly season'.

To illustrate the 'unfairness', golf fans pointed to the fact that LIV Golf's Joaquin Niemann, who triumphed at the Australian Open, received just 14.8 points. 

Another LIV player, Dean Burmester, received just 12.5 points for winning the DP World Tour's co-sanctioned South Africa Open.

It was also pointed out that Will Zalatoris, who like Tiger played his first competitive golf since injuring his back at the 47th Masters, earned more points than Alex Fitzpatrick for finishing dead last in Woods' event despite the Englishman finishing T-8 at the Australian Open. 

Fitzpatrick had to make a cut and shots rounds of 68-66-66-74 for 1.8 ranking points. 

A rusty Zalatoris posted rounds of 81-68-79-71 for 2.1 ranking points. 

"Just an example of the absurdity of the system," one LIV fan wrote on X. 

Another fan questioned: "If you want to move on from the OWGR why do you keep demanding points?"

LIV Golf were officially denied their bid for OWGR accreditation on 10 October. 

The governing body turned down the rival league's application over concerns about the circuit's format. 

OWGR chairman Peter Dawson said the 54-hole, no-cut events for 48 players was an issue, along with limited access for players to join the venture.

"Simply put, the board committee does not believe it is equitable to thousands of players who strive every day to get starts in OWGR eligible tournaments to have a tour operate in this mostly closed fashion," Dawson wrote in his letter to LIV's Greg Norman and their chief operating officer Gary Davidson. 

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