In what is sure to further rankle LIV Golf players, Tiger Woods has vaulted 430 spots in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) after finishing 18th out of 20 players in his invitational Hero World Challenge.
Woods, who was making his first start since withdrawing from the Masters in April, had fallen to a career-low 1328th in the OWGR by last week. He made his return in the Bahamas and while the 47-year-old surprised many with his solid play, Woods bested only two players in the field.
That didn't prevent him from climbing to 898th in the OWGR, his highest since before withdrawing from the 2022 PGA Championship.
That also doesn't speak to the fact that the Hero World Challenge is an unofficial PGA Tour event.
LIV had its application to earn OWGR points denied earlier this year, largely due to the fact that its events are limited to 48 players competing in a three-day shotgun start format with no cut that also includes a team aspect.
But that Woods could climb 430 spots in an unofficial event in which he finishes third to last will almost certainly draw ire from those who believe LIV players should be earning rankings points.
Woods finished ahead of only reigning US Open champion Wyndham Clark and Will Zalatoris, who made his own return from a back injury that sidelined him the past nine months. Zalatoris remained at No.33 in the world despite finishing last by nine shots.
Zalatoris earned 2.1 world ranking points for his last-placed finish in the Bahamas. For comparison, Englishman Laurie Canter of LIV earned only a bit more - 3.6 points - for a tie for fourth at the Australian Open, sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia.
Scottie Scheffler, who won the Hero World Challenge following runner-up finishes each of the past two years, strengthened his hold on the No.1 ranking ahead of Rory McIlroy. Jon Rahm, who is reportedly weighing an offer of around $600 million ($A906 million) to join LIV, is third.
Australian Associated Press