Women’s Golf World Rankings – Movers of the Year


It has been a very unusual LPGA season so far to say the least. Due to the pandemic there were four tournaments played early in the year, and then play was halted for five months. Play finally resumed on the last day of July, but fans were not allowed to attend. Nine more tournaments have now been played, so thirteen tournaments are now in the books. The player results of these thirteen tournaments have been treated by the Rolex Women’s Golf World Rankings as any other results would have been treated in any normal year.

Thirteen tournaments may not sound like a lot, but it has resulted in major changes in the Rolex Rankings in 2020. Changes that will have a direct affect as to what players will qualify for both the 2021 Olympic and Solheim Cup teams.

The Rolex Women’s Golf World Rankings system awards points to players based on an accumulated 104-week “rolling” period, with the points awarded in the most recent 13-week period carrying a stronger value. A player is then ranked according to her average points per tournament, as determined by dividing her total number of points by the number of eligible tournaments played during the 104-week period. A minimum divisor (35) is also used.

Stacy Lewis at the 2019 Mediheal Championship | Photo by Ben Harpring

I have gone back to the first Rolex Rankings of the year and compared them to the current rankings. The only requirement for my list is: A player must have been ranked in the top 150 at the start of the year, or be in the top 100 now (or else this list would be filled with unknown names).

The Year’s Biggest Gainers

1- Sophia Popov – 0.27 to 2.91 = Gain of 2.64 (moved from #344 to #25)
2- Inbee Park – 4.31 to 6.18 = Gain of 1.87 (move 14-4)
3- Hae Ran Ryu – 0.98 to 2.73 = Gain of 1.75 (move 122-31)
4- Mirim Lee – 1.35 to 3.07 = Gain of 1.72 (move 85-22)
5- Stacy Lewis – 1.14 to 2.73 = Gain of 1.59 (move 101-30)
6- Mel Reid – 1.12 to 2.56 = Gain of 1.44 (move 102-36)
7- Sei Young Kim – 5.63 to 6.87 = Gain of 1.24 (move 5-2)
8- Yuka Saso – 0.36 to 1.57 = Gain 0f 1.21 (move 282-76)
T9- Hyun Kyung Park – 1.23 to 2.33 = Gain of 1.10 (move 95-42)
T9- Jennifer Kupcho – 1.97 to 3.07 = Gain of 1.10 (move 51-23)
11- Austin Ernst – 1.71 to 2.66 = Gain of 0.95 (move 63-32)
12- Jasmine Suwannapura – 0.92 to 1.81 = Gain of 0.89 (move 131-63)
13- Emily Pedersen – 0.12 to 0.96 = Gain of 0.84 (move 509-116)
14- Andrea Lee – 0.03 to 0.84 = Gain of 0.81 (move 797-131)
15- Ayaka Furue – 1.37 to 2.09 = Gain of 0.72 (move 82-49)
16- Yealimi Noh – 1.10 to 1.81 = Gain of 0.71 (move 105-64)
17- Anna Nordqvist – 1.28 to 1.96 = Gain of 0.68 (move 89-54)
18- Madelene Sagstrom – 1.03 to 1.70 = Gain of 0.67 (move 118-70)
19- Na Rin An – 0.53 to 1.11 = Gain of 0.58 (move 202-100)
20- Ashleigh Buhai – 1.10 to 1.66 = Gain of 0.56 (move 104-73)
T21- Maria Fassi – 0.33 to 0.80 = Gain of 0.47 (move 300-148)
T21- Jennifer Song – 1.11 to 1.58 =Gain of 0.47 (move 103-74)
23- Lauren Stephenson – 0.51 to 0.95 = Gain of 0.44 (move 208-118)
T24- Danielle Kang – 5.77 to 6.15 = Gain of 0.38 (move 4-5)
T24- Katherine Kirk – 1.05 to 1.43 = Gain of 0.38 (move 115-81)

Ariya Jutanugarn at the 2019 Hugel-Air Premia LA Open | Photo: Ben Harpring

The Year’s Biggest Decliners

1- Jin Young Ko – 9.45 to 7.83 = Loss of 1.62 (moved from #1 to #1)
2- Sung Hyun Park – 6.77 to 5.23 = Loss of 1.54 (move 2-8)
3- Ariya Jutanugarn – 4.64 to 3.21 = Loss of 1.43 (move 12-19)
4- Jeong Eun Lee6 – 5.51 to 4.22 = Loss of 1.29 (move 7-12)
5- Hinako Shibuno – 4.76 to 3.62 = Loss of 1.14 (move 11-15)
6- Jessica Korda – 4.26 to 3.16 = Loss of 1.10 (move 17-21)
7- Amy Yang – 3.69 to 2.74 = Loss of 0.95 (move 20-29)
8- Bronte Law – 2.76 to 1.85 = Loss of 0.91 (move 31-61)
9- Ai Suzuki – 4.28 to 3.43 = Loss of 0.85 (move 15-16)
10- Lizette Salas – 3.75 to 2.99 = Loss of 0.76 (move 19-24)
11- Sun Ju Ahn – 2.12 to 1.43 = Loss of 0.69 (move 47-80)
12- Da Yeon Lee – 2.79 to 2.11 = Loss of 0.68 (move 30-48)
13- Jiyai Shin – 3.17 to 2.51 = Loss of 0.66 (move 24-38)
14- I.K. Kim – 2.36 to 1.73 = Loss of 0.63 (move 39-68)
15- Jeong Min Cho – 1.74 to 1.14 = Loss of 0.60 (move 60-95)
T16- Annie Park – 1.68 to 1.13 = Loss of 0.55 (move 64-98)
T16- A Yean Cho – 2.53 to 1.98 = Loss of 0.55 (move 35-53)
18- Angel Yin – 2.33 to 1.80 = Loss of 0.53 (move 42-65)
19- Eun-Hee Ji – 2.58 to 2.06 = Loss of 0.52 (34-50)
20- Seon Woo Bae – 2.81 to 2.30 = Loss of 0.51 (move 29-44)
21- Lexi Thompson – 5.30 to 4.81 = Loss of 0.49 (move 10-10)
22- A Lim Kim – 1.59 to 1.11 = Loss of 0.48 (move 68-101)
T23- Misuzu Narita – 1.37 to 0.90 = Loss of 0.47 (move 80-122)
T23- Shanshan Feng – 3.34 to 2.87 = Loss of 0.47 (move 23-26)
25- Mamiko Higa – 1.65 to 1.19 = Loss of 0.46 (move 66-92)

In Other LPGA News:

All four events that comprised the LPGA’s fall Asian swing have now been officially canceled due to quarantine requirements put in place for crossing borders.

The LPGA announced that a second Drive On Championship will be added to the schedule. It will be played on 10/22-10/27. It will be a four day full field event, held at the Reynolds Lake Oconee, in Greensboro, Ga.

The 2023 Solheim Cup will be hosted by Spain. The biennial contest will take place at the world renowned championship course at Finca Cortesin, Andalicia. The exact dates have yet to be announced.

Feature Photo: Sei Young Kim at the 2019 CME Group Tour Championship. Photographer: Ben Harpring






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