Tiger’s Top Ranking Under Threat

Picture: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
Tiger Woods is in danger of losing his number one ranking to Adam Scott. Picture: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Aussie Adam Scott  is set to become golf's world number one for the first time in his career if he wins the WGC Cadillac Championship at Doral and Tiger Woods  finishes outside the top-seven. Woods is the defending champion, but comes into the tournament under an injury cloud after not finishing last weekend’s Honda Classic because of back spasms.

At Palm Beach, Woods began feeling discomfort in his lower back during a pre-round practice range session on the final day. It became pronounced by the ninth hole, as he favoured his back after the tee shot and again when taking his ball out of the cup. The 14-time major winner later described the back spasms as similar to what he experienced at the Barclays in August, when he finished tied for second, but struggled in his next three events. It was the sixth time in 297 events on the PGA Tour Woods was forced to pull-out. Tiger cancelled his scheduled media commitments before the Cadillac Championship and bypassed the practice round. Even though he’s a four-time winner of this event, Woods hasn’t seen the revamped Blue Monster course at Trump National Doral since significant changes were made shortly after he won there last year.

Rory McIlroy  has his demons to deal with too. McIlroy let the Honda Classic slip from his grasp after leading for the first three days, only to be beaten in a four-way play-off by Russell Henley. He followed rounds of 63, 66 and 69 with a 74 on money day, leaving him without a win on the PGA Tour since 2012.

Scott comes into this tournament after finishing T12 at the Honda, four strokes behind Henley. At his first outing after an extended break, Scott managed three sub-par rounds at PGA National. Fellow Queenslander Jason Day  had the weekend off after his success at the WGC Match Play Championship in Arizona.

The WGC Cadillac Championship is a $9m event with no 36-hole cut. Barring withdrawals, it boasts all of the top 50 players in the official World Golf Rankings.

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