Noren cracks OWGR top 10 with Nedbank win


Alex Noren's rapid rise through the world rankings continued after his win at the Nedbank Golf Challenge.

The Swede now has four European Tour victories since July, the latest of which moved Noren up eight spots to No. 9 in the latest world rankings. It marks a career-best ranking for the 34-year-old, who was outside the OWGR top 100 as recently as the U.S. Open.

Noren was not the only winner to make a big jump in the standings, as Pat Perez moved up 165 spots to No. 106 after his win at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba. It was Perez's first win since 2010 and came in just his third start since missing most of last season with a torn labrum.

A runner-up finish in Mexico allowed Gary Woodland to rise nine spots to No. 45, an important shift given that the top 50 in the OWGR at the end of the year will receive invites to the Masters. Russell Knox jumped one spot to No. 18 with his third-place finish at Mayakoba, while Scott Piercy's T-4 result moved him up three spots to No. 32.

Korea's Jeunghun Wang rose 25 spots to No. 66 after finishing second to Noren in South Africa, while T-3 finishes in Sun City moved Andy Sullivan and Victor Dubuission up to Nos. 40 and 93, respectively.

The top five remain the same this week, as Jason Day maintains his lead over Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Henrik Stenson and Jordan Spieth. Hideki Matsuyama moved back to No. 6 after winning for the third time in his last four worldwide starts, at the Taiheiyo Masters, while Adam Scott dropped one spot to No. 7 followed by Patrick Reed, Noren and Bubba Watson.

Idle since August 2015 as he recovers from multiple back surgeries, Tiger Woods fell 23 more spots to No. 861 in the world.