Tiger Woods Admits World Rankings Are ‘Flawed’

The American says he hopes the OWGR system is altered soon to address the issues

Tiger Woods during the second round of the 2022 Masters
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Tiger Woods has admitted there are flaws in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) system following changes that came into effect in August. 

Previously, the OWGR used a strength of field system based on the players in the top 200 in each tournament. However, that was altered to take into account the Strokes Gained World Rating. Some players, including Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter, have complained that the new system heavily favours the PGA Tour over other tours, and that’s something the 15-time Major winner has acknowledged. 

Woods, who is in the Bahamas this week hosting the Hero World Challenge, said: “OWGR, it’s a flawed system. That’s something we all here recognise. The field at Dubai got less points than Sea Island and more of the top players were there in Dubai, so obviously there’s a flawed system.”

The DP World Tour’s season-closing DP World Tour Championship featured seven of the world’s top 25 players yet offered fewer OWGR points than the PGA Tour’s RSM Classic at Sea Island in the same week, where the highest-ranked player was World No.30 Shane Lowry. That was a situation John Rahm described as “laughable.” 

However, Woods does not think the issue is insurmountable. He said: “How do you fix it? You know, those are meetings we’re going to have to have. We’re going to have to have it with the World Golf Committee and as well as our - the main tours that are involved in it. Somehow come up with a better system than is in place now.”

Even this week, another pro, David Micheluzz, questioned why he received fewer OWGR points in the Australian PGA Championship than the last time he played in it despite finishing higher and as part of a stronger field. However, Woods pointed out that the system has had flaws in the past, which have been addressed – something he hopes will happen again soon. He said: “I remember in my career when I – I had a big lead in my career, I didn’t have to play a single tournament the next year, and I still would be ranked No.1. We changed that system then. So it has been changed in the past and I’m sure this will be changed hopefully soon.”

In the shorter term, Woods had been due to compete in this week's tournament at Albany, but will be sidelined after developing plantar fasciitis in his right foot. However, he said he doesn't expect it to keep him out of action for long. He said: " I can hit golf balls. It's the walking that just hurts. So that's just a - something that - when you've got plantar fasciitis, the only thing you can do is rest and try and stretch that out as best as possible, but it's rest. How do you rest when you're hosting a tournament? You know, it's hard. So this will be a tough week. 

"The father-son [PNC Championship] will be a very easy week, Charlie will just hit all the shots and I'll just get the putts out of the hole, so pretty easy there. But other than that, in The Match we're playing in, we're flying in carts."

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Mike Hall

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.