Lydia Ko ascends to No. 2 in women’s golf world rankings
Lydia Ko caps off a three-win, Rookie of the Year 2014 by climbing to No. 2 in the world in women’s golf.
To say that Lydia Ko, the LPGA wunderkind, had a pretty good year would be akin to suggesting Michael Jordan was decent in the clutch.
2014 has been an awesome season. Thank you to my amazing sponsors, team and fans for supporting and cheering me on! pic.twitter.com/DO0PhHc2ep
— Lydia Ko (@Lko424) December 24, 2014
Ko, who ran away with LPGA Rookie of the Year honors and bagged the biggest bounty in tour history, may not be MJ-caliber just yet but she’s on her way after leapfrogging Stacy Lewis for the No. 2 spot in the world rankings.
Thanks to the equation upon which things are based, Ko last week moved up a step on the rankings ladder from No. 3, where she spent much of 2014. After earning one of her three tour victories and tying for second at the NW Arkansas Championship, the 17-year-old New Zealander had a cup of coffee in second place during the summer when Lewis reigned supreme.
This time, Ko moved past Lewis and some 11 points behind frontrunner Inbee Park without teeing it up in competition since she cashed a $1 million check for winning the Tour Championship and Race to the CME Globe on November 24.
While the formula for women’s rankings divides total points earned in the last two years by the number of tournaments played, more recent results have more weight. A win at the season-ender in Naples, Fla., plus top-10 finishes in the year’s final two majors (and 14 overall) for Ko, who turned professional in October 2013, put her slightly ahead of Lewis (9.95 points to 9.92) to end the year.
Among her many achievements in her first year as a full-time professional, Ko became the youngest Rookie of the Year, the youngest LPGA player to record five wins, and the youngest millionaire in tour history.
“This year has been awesome,” Ko said after outlasting Carlota Ciganda on the fifth playoff hole at the Tour Championship. “Three wins, Rookie of the Year, it’s a huge honor for me to be here in this position.”