American golfer Tiger Woods has finally returned to the top of the world rankings for the first time since October 2010 after he triumphed at the Arnold Palmer Invitational by two strokes. Woods replaced the Irishman Rory McIlroy at the top of the pile after the American reached a new career low of 58th in the world in November 2011. Wood’s win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill was his 77th PGA title and his third of 2013.
Woods was leading the tournament the whole way and continued to lead it after the storm which suspended Sunday’s play. He defeated the English number one Justin Rose by two shots as Rose climbed to third in the world rankings table himself.
Following his 8th win at Bay Hill Tiger Woods admitted, “I’m very pleased with the way I’m playing. It was a by-product of hard work, patience and getting back to playing golf tournaments. I’ve turned some of the weaknesses that I had last year into strengths. I’m really excited about the rest of this year.” This is the 11th time in his career Tiger Woods has reached the number one spot, he will fight to keep it against tough competition such as Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose.
This is Woods’ sixth title win from his past 20 PGA Tour starts and following the wins at Doral and Torrey Pines earlier this year, he is favourite to win the first major of the year in Augusta in April. His most recent major victory was back in 2008 and his first ever major win was in June 1997 at the age of 21, where he also made it as the world number one for the 1st time in his playing career.
Tiger Woods started to shine in the 21st century topping the rankings for 264 weeks from August 1999 to September 2004 and 281 weeks from June 2005 to October 2010. However, his fine form was soon broken when there was a scandal about him and his private life, mixed with injuries to his knee and Achilles which all helped him fall down the rankings.
Nevertheless, Woods has regained his number one for the first time in just over 2 years but he could lose it very soon. Rory McIlroy did not play in the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill which allowed Woods to take number one spot, but this week McIlroy is playing in the Houston Open whilst Tiger Woods is not, if the Irishman can win that tournament, he will take back his world number one position.