Lee Westwood returned to the summit of the Official World Golf Ranking on Monday morning after a thrilling weekend tussle between himself and Like Donald, despite the two Englishman playing 10,000 miles apart.
As the final rounds of the Asian Tour’s Indonesia Masters and the PGA Tour’s The Heritage dawned, it was clear that the two men in command of those respective tournaments – Westwood in Indonesia and Donald in the USA – would both have the opportunity to claim the World Number One spot from Martin Kaymer with a victory.
Westwood, some 13 hours ahead of Donald in Indonesia, kept his side of the bargain with a three shot win over Thongchai Jaidee at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club.
Donald then needed to hold onto his one stroke lead to move to Number One but he eventually lost out on the third hole of a sudden-death play-off to Brandt Snedeker, who had rampaged into contention at Harbour Town Golf Links with a final round 64.
At the end of a long day’s golf – that also saw Belgium’s Nicolas Colsaerts claim the Volvo China Open – it was Westwood who reclaimed the World Number One position that he had held between November 2010 and February 2011 when he was usurped by Kaymer.
The man who celebrated his 38th birthday with victory at the Indonesia Masters now heads to the Ballantine’s Championship in Korea looking to consolidate his return to the top spot with a strong performance at the Blackstone Golf Resort in Icheon, on the outskirts of Seoul.
“I’m delighted to be coming to the Ballantine’s Championship as World Number One," said Westwood.
“Being top of the Official World Golf Ranking makes me feel very proud and I’m sure Korea’s knowledgeable and passionate golf fans are aware of the hard work and dedication it takes to reach that position.
“I’m very much looking forward to the tournament and hopefully I’ll give the galleries plenty to cheer about in the coming days.”