Official World Golf Ranking Review 2018
It's been a year of changes at the top of the Official World Golf Ranking which started the year with a battle between Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas for the No.1 position and finished the year with a duel between Brooks Koepka and Justin Rose. Brooks Koekpa, with Major victories in the US Open and PGA Championships, and Justin Rose, FedEx Cup winner with fifteen Top-10 finishes, changed places at the top of the Ranking four times between October and December and are almost inseparable just 0.015 average ranking points apart.
There were also other notable changes in the Ranking with Bryson DeChambeau, Tony Finau and Xander Schauffele from the United States moving into the World Top-10 displacing their fellow countrymen Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler; also Patrick Reed, the Masters Champion, moved into the Top-15. On the European Tour Eddie Pepperell, Matt Wallace and Lucas Bjerregaard made spectacular progress into the World Top-50 together with Race to Dubai winner Francesco Molinari, winner of the Open Championship and victories on both the European and PGA Tours, moving into the World Top-10.
Worldwide, Australian Cameron Smith retained his Australian PGA title to move into the Top-50, also South African Justin Harding, with two victories on both Sunshine and Asian Tours, and Mexican Abraham Ancer with victory in the Australian Open and six Top-10 finishes on the PGA TOUR made considerable progress in the Ranking. Shugo Imahira, the Japan No.1 moved closer to the Top-50 at No.53 and fellow compatriot Satoshi Kodaira with a victory on the PGA TOUR moved into the Top-50, whilst Hideki Matsuyama dropped out of the World Top-10. Indian Shubhankar Sharma won the Maybank Championship and the Asian Order of Merit and moved into the World Top-100 mid-year.
24-year old Jon Rahm, World No.6, is the youngest player in the Top-50 and the oldest player is 48-year old Phil Mickelson who achieved the unique feat of retaining his place in the OWGR Top-50 for 25 years in November. Bill Hass moved out of the OWGR Top-200 after over nine years, but the return to form of former World No.1 Tiger Woods and 2016 Masters Champion Danny Willett was a welcome feature of the late season winning the United States and European final Tour Championships respectively, Tiger to the World Top-15 and Danny to the Top-100 after both had dropped out of the OWGR Top-400.