Is This How The World Rankings Would Look If LIV Golf Was Included?

Sports Illustrated has unveiled its brand new men's world rankings, and there are some big differences compared to the Official World Golf Ranking

Five golfers pictured in a montage - Rory McIlroy, Eugenio Chacarra, Jon Rahm, Dustin Johnson and Will Zalatoris
The brand new Sports Illustrated World Golf Rankings sees some big changes compared to the Official World Golf Ranking
(Image credit: Future)

The Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) is in somewhat disarray at the moment following wholesale changes to its system last year and the emergence of LIV Golf, meaning that some of the game's best players have fallen dramatically after moving to the new Saudi-backed circuit.

Big names from both the PGA Tour and LIV Golf have criticised the OWGR, with LIV's world ranking fate set to be decided by the four men's Majors.

Dustin Johnson is no longer in the top 50, the likes of Bryson DeChambeau, Sergio Garcia and Ian Poulter are outside of the top 100 and Lee Westwood finds himself outside of the world's top 200. With LIV still not currently offering world ranking points, these big names are only going to continue sliding further down, no matter how well they play in the 14-event $405m series.

Sports Illustrated has taken it into its own hands by creating the Sports Illustrated World Golf Rankings (SIWGR) along with Golf Intelligence, and there's some very interesting player movements.

The SIWGR factors in LIV Golf and looks at the players' last 12 months instead of the OWGR's 24 month outlook. It also calculates strength-of-field and course difficulty, with the current top 100 set to be branched out further in the future and a women's rankings on the way, too.

The top three - Rahm, Scheffler and McIlroy - remain the same but Will Zalatoris ranks 4th, up from his position of 7th in the OWGR. The biggest notable change towards the top of the rankings sees Dustin Johnson in 13th, up from his current OWGR spot of 54th.

Johnson kisses the trophy

LIV Golf's Dustin Johnson ranks 13th in Sports Illustrated's rankings compared to 54th in the OWGR

(Image credit: Getty Images)

There are plenty of non-LIV players seeing huge rises up the SIWGR compared to the real-life OWGR, too. KH Lee is ranked 25th by Sports Illustrated compared to 38th in the OWGR, while Chris Kirk has gone from 47th to 31st, Jason Day from 46th to 32nd and Nick Taylor 71st to 37th.

However, and unsurprisingly, the biggest risers do indeed come from LIV Golf.

Anirban Lahiri ranks 99th in the OWGR and is set to slip outside of the top 100 very soon, but he is 42nd in the new SIWGR. Brooks Koepka, 85th in the OWGR, is 53rd. Sergio Garcia has gone from 129th in the OWGR up to 66th by Sports Illustrated, Charl Schwartzel from 184th to 81st and Lee Westwood from 228th to 85th.

The two biggest risers in the SIWGR compared to the OWGR are Peter Uihlein and Eugenio Chacarra. Uilhein is ranked 70th by Sports Illustrated compared to 403rd in the OWGR, while LIV Bangkok champion Chacarra is 84th in the SIWGR compared to 501st in the OWGR.

Not all LIV players have seen rises, though, with World No.5 Cameron Smith dropping to 6th in the SIWGR and Abraham Ancer going from 27th in the OWGR all the way down to 60th in the SIWGR.

“As the benchmark for comprehensive sports coverage, we are thrilled to create the SI World Golf Rankings to give fans an alternative way to analyze players across global tours,” said Chris Pirrone, Senior Vice President & General Manager of Sports Illustrated. “We believe the rankings are a better reflection of the state of professional golf competition, are more robust and comprehensive, and provide a more accurate understanding of who the best golfers are right now.”  

“Golf Intelligence has unique and proprietary data, including on every golf course layout, with artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities to refine strength-of-field metrics and continuously inform SI Golf’s new ranking system,” said Jim Stracka, President of Golf Intelligence. 

Current SI World Golf Rankings, as of February 22, 2023:

  • 1. Jon Rahm
  • 2. Scottie Scheffler
  • 3. Rory McIlroy
  • 4. Will Zalatoris
  • 5. Patrick Cantlay
  • 6. Cameron Smith
  • 7. Max Homa
  • 8. Xander Schauffele
  • 9. Justin Thomas
  • 10. Tony Finau
  • 11. Collin Morikawa
  • 12. Matthew Fitzpatrick
  • 13. Dustin Johnson 
  • 14. Cameron Young
  • 15. Tom Kim

View the full top 100 of the Sports Illustrated World Golf Ranking.

Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV