Matsuyama Nears Top 10 With Win

His playoff win over Rickie Fowler at the Waste Management Phoenix Open has Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama up to No. 12 in the world this week, having jumped three spots with the victory and up seven since the beginning of 2016.

Still 16 days shy of his 24th birthday, Matsuyama is off to a fast start this season, with two Top 10 finishes in his first five events. He’s the top-ranked Japanese player by a wide margin – Shingto Katayama is second, at No. 66.

An idle Jordan Spieth retained the No. 1 ranking, his 13th week in a row at the top and 19th overall. In three weeks he’ll tie Lee Westwood for the 10th-most weeks at No. 1.

With another strong finish on the European Tour, Henrik Stenson reclaimed the No. 5 spot, bouncing Bubba Watson down to No. 6, the lowest the two-time Masters champion has been in a while.

Right behind Matsuyama this week is England’s Danny Willett, who climbed six spots to No. 13 after winning the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.  Back in the top 30 this week was Phil Mickelson at No. 29 after tying for 11th at Phoenix.

Tiger Woods, who hasn’t played in nearly six months and still has not set a time table for his return from a pair of back surgeries, dropped to No. 440.

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