Lydia Ko returns to world No. 1



The Manila Times


MIAMI: New Zealand’s Lydia Ko is atop the women’s golf world rankings for the third time in her career, regaining the No. 1 spot on Monday (Tuesday in Manila) a week after her LPGA Tour Championship triumph. Ko, who first reached number one in 2015, passed American Nelly Korda, who had moved atop the rankings on November 14 after a one-stroke victory at the Pelican Women’s Championship. “I’m very grateful to be world number one again,” Ko said in a statement. “To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I’d ever be back here again. “This wouldn’t have been possible without my family and team, thank you for your belief and love.” Ko became the youngest world number one when she topped the rankings in 2015, holding the top spot from February 2 to June 14 for a total of 19 weeks. She then reigned as number one for 85 weeks from October 2015 to June 2017. The span of five years, five months and 17 days is the longest period between spells at number one — Ko regaining the summit after a 2022 resurgence that started with a January victory at the LPGA at Boca Rio in Florida. She had ended a near three-year title drought — during which she dropped as low as 59th in the world — with a victory in the Lotte Championship in Hawaii in 2021. She thrust herself back among the game’s elite this year, following her Boca Rio triumph with victories at the BMW Ladies Championship and the seasonending Tour Championship. That last win came with a $2 million winner’s prize, the largest first-place prize in the history of women’s golf.