Watson makes record leap up the rankings

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The Independent Online

It may come as little consolation, but Tom Watson's agonising play-off defeat at the Open has improved his world ranking by a record 1,269 places – from 1,374th to 105th.

If he had holed his eight-foot putt on the final green and become, at 59, the oldest major winner in history by 11 years, Watson would now be ranked 45th in the world. He did not have any ranking points prior to Turnberry under the two-year system and was listed as joint 1,374th with 4,000 other players who had played counting events but finished out of the points.

Next year's event is at St Andrews and Watson is already looking forward to returning to the home of golf. "I feel like I can play St Andrews," he said. "I still have some of the shots to be able to play that golf course. But if the wind comes from the west I have a hard time – hole number four gets me. I can't hit it far enough to get it over the junk. And it depends on how deep the rough is."