Birthday bonanza for Manassero

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High flying Matteo Manassero will celebrate his 18th birthday today as the 33rd-ranked golfer in the world.

High flying Italian teenager Matteo Manassero will celebrate his 18th birthday on Tuesday as the 33rd-ranked golfer in the world

And along with his entry into the World’s Top 50 will come the joy of knowing it will have qualified him to play in the last three Majors of the year, the US Open, the Open Championship and the PGA Championship along with the season’s final two World Golf Championship events, the WGC Bridgestone Invitational and the WGC Champions Champions.

For many golfers playing in these events is a dream that is never fulfilled, but for an 18-year-old it’s a boost almost beyond belief and it certainly had the youngster over the moon this weekend.

“I just missed out on Augusta, but playing the other three majors will be fantastic,” Sky Sports has reported Manassero as saying .

“I am really proud of that and the next target will be winning another tournament and keeping the momentum going.

“It’s a great achievement after just 11 months of professional golf.”

He said it had helped make his 18th birthday something really special and said: “I couldn’t imagine anything better, going back home to celebrate my 18th birthday and my second victory.

“It’s great to be able to celebrate both together. I never expected it at all to have one win before I was 18 and now I’ve got two.”

Manassero, who last October became the youngest winner in European Tour history, triumphed for the second time at the Maybank Malaysian Open at the weekend when he edged past 3rd round leader Rory McIlroy and went on to win by one from Frenchman Gregory Bourdy and by two from McIlroy and rocketed 24 places from 57th to oust former PGA Champion YE Yang at No 33.

American rookie Brendan Steele, meanwhile, has moved up 99 rungs to 132nd after his unexpected victory at the Texas Open at TPC San Antonio on Sunday.

At the top end of the leaderboard Martin Kaymer remains at World No 1 with England’s Lee Westwood and Luke Donald filling the next two places despite taking a break from competitive golf this past weekend.

McIlroy moves from 9th to 7th and the 75th Masters champion Charl Schwartzel stays just outside the Top 10 bubble at No 11 and remains the highest ranked South African ahead of Ernie Els, who is currently 15th on the rankings ladder.

Adam Scott, on the strength of his strong finish at Augusta National is once more the leading Australian. He is at 18th, one clear of the leading Italian,.Edoardo Molinari.

The top 100 names on the latest official World Golf Rankings:

1 Martin Kaymer (Ger) 7.65
2 Lee Westwood (Eng) 7.38
3 Luke Donald (Eng) 7.02
4 Phil Mickelson (USA) 6.63
5 Graeme McDowell (NIrl) 5.93
6 Tiger Woods (USA) 5.89
7 Rory McIlroy (NIrl) 5.74
8 Paul Casey (Eng) 5.68
9 Steve Stricker (USA) 5.47
10 Matt Kuchar (USA) 5.24
11 Charl Schwartzel (Rsa) 5.19
12 Dustin Johnson (USA) 5.06
13 Jim Furyk (USA) 4.94
14 Nick Watney (USA) 4.56
15 Ernie Els (Rsa) 4.52
16 Ian Poulter (Eng) 4.28
17 Bubba Watson (USA) 4.27
18 Adam Scott (Aus) 4.23
19 Francesco Molinari (Ita) 4.20
20 Hunter Mahan (USA) 4.11
21 Robert Karlsson (Swe) 4.01
22 Retief Goosen (Rsa) 3.95
23 Martin Laird (Sco) 3.93
24 Jason Day (Aus) 3.81
25 Justin Rose (Eng) 3.73
26 Alvaro Quiros (Spa) 3.65
27 Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa) 3.58
28 Tim Clark (Rsa) 3.54
29 Edoardo Molinari (Ita) 3.52
30 Geoff Ogilvy (Aus) 3.50
31 Louis Oosthuizen (Rsa) 3.48
32 Robert Allenby (Aus) 3.37
33 Matteo Manassero (Ita) 3.30
34 Rickie Fowler (USA) 3.06
35 Y.E. Yang (Kor) 3.06
36 Zach Johnson (USA) 2.94
37 K J Choi (Kor) 2.92
38 Padraig Harrington (Irl) 2.89
39 Kyung-Tae Kim (Kor) 2.87
40 Ryan Moore (USA) 2.85
41 Ben Crane (USA) 2.85
42 Peter Hanson (Swe) 2.75
43 Anthony Kim (USA) 2.69
44 Ross Fisher (Eng) 2.68
45 Ryo Ishikawa (Jpn) 2.67
46 Bo Van Pelt (USA) 2.62
47 Anders Hansen (Den) 2.58
48 Gary Woodland (USA) 2.56
49 Bill Haas (USA) 2.54
50 Mark Wilson (USA) 2.45
51 Charley Hoffman (USA) 2.40
52 Camilo Villegas (Col) 2.40
53 Vijay Singh (Fij) 2.36
54 Ryan Palmer (USA) 2.35
55 Yuta Ikeda (Jpn) 2.35
56 Rory Sabbatini (Rsa) 2.33
57 Stephen Marino (USA) 2.31
58 Aaron Baddeley (Aus) 2.29
59 Jeff Overton (USA) 2.25
60 Hiroyuki Fujita (Jpn) 2.24
61 Jonathan Byrd (USA) 2.22
62 J.B. Holmes (USA) 2.20
63 Stewart Cink (USA) 2.13
64 Kevin Na (USA) 2.09
65 Thomas Bjorn (Den) 2.08
66 Brandt Snedeker (USA) 2.05
67 Scott Verplank (USA) 2.02
68 Brendan Jones (Aus) 1.99
69 Sean O’Hair (USA) 1.95
70 Heath Slocum (USA) 1.89
71 Stuart Appleby (Aus) 1.88
72 Noh Seung-yul (Kor) 1.88
73 Sergio Garcia (Spa) 1.87
74 Stephen Gallacher (Sco) 1.87
75 Angel Cabrera (Arg) 1.85
76 Richard Green (Aus) 1.83
77 David Toms (USA) 1.79
78 Toru Taniguchi (Jpn) 1.78
79 Jason Dufner (USA) 1.78
80 Ricky Barnes (USA) 1.78
81 Simon Dyson (Eng) 1.77
82 Raphael Jacquelin (Fra) 1.77
83 Tetsuji Hiratsuka (Jpn) 1.74
84 Jhonattan Vegas (USA) 1.71
85 David Horsey (Eng) 1.70
86 Rhys Davies (Wal) 1.70
87 Marc Leishman (Aus) 1.70
88 Gregory Bourdy (Fra) 1.69
89 D.A. Points (USA) 1.66
90 Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) 1.65
91 Chris Kirk (USA) 1.63
92 Liang Wen-Chong (Chn) 1.61
93 Henrik Stenson (Swe) 1.58
94 James Kingston (Rsa) 1.58
95 Brendon De Jonge (USA) 1.57
96 John Senden (Aus) 1.55
97 Brian Davis (Eng) 1.55
98 Robert Garrigus (USA) 1.54
99 Fredrik Andersson Hed (Swe) 1.54
100 Spencer Levin (USA) 1.53

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