Number three slips by Westwood

Lee Westwood’s disappointing finish in Doha stopped him reaching his highest ever spot on the world rankings.

Lee Westwood’s disappointing finish to the Qatar Masters in Doha on Sunday meant that he just missed out on reaching his highest-ever spot on the world rankings.
Westwood would have moved above American Steve Stricker into third place if he had managed to win or even finish as the runner-up to Robert Karlsson in Doha, but he bogeyed the 16th and missed birdie putts on the las two greens to finish joint third with Brett Rumford..
Last year’s European Tour number one thus stays as world number four, while 2008 money list winner Karlsson climbs from 31st to 17th.
Spaniard Alvaro Quiros came second and by moving to 32nd in the world has virtually guaranteed himself a return to Augusta for The Masters in April.
The top 50 in the week before the event earn automatic invitations.
England’s Ross McGowan and Spaniard Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, meanwhile, are in position to profit from the expected absence of top two Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson from the Accenture World Match Play Championship in Tucson in two weeks.
Mickelson has already confirmed he is taking the week off, while there is no indication that Woods will end his indefinite break from golf for an event backed by one of the sponsors who have dropped him because of his sex scandal.
The tournament is for the game’s leading 64 available players and with one week to go in qualifying McGowan is 65th and Fernandez-Castano 66th.
The World’s Top 20 this week:
1 Tiger Woods 13.34pts, 2 Phil Mickelson 7.75, 3 Steve Stricker 6.88, 4 Lee Westwood 6.65, 5 Jim Furyk 5.42, 6 Martin Kaymer 5.27, 7 Paul Casey 5.20, 8 Padraig Harrington 5.14, 9 Rory McIlroy 5.13, 10 Henrik Stenson 5.10
11 Ian Poulter 5.05. 12Geoff Ogilvy 4.97, 13 Kenny Perry 4.61, 14 Sergio Garcia 4.29, 15 Robert Allenby 4.29, 16 Sean O’Hair 4.17, 17 Robert Karlsson 4.13, 18 Retief Goosen 4.00, 19 Stewart Cink 3.99, 20 Ernie Els 3.99
Other leading Europeans in the top 100:
21 Ross Fisher, 32 Alvaro Quiros, 33 Luke Donald, 40 Oliver Wilson, 41 Soren Kjeldsen, 42 Francesco Molinari, 44 Anders Hansen, 45 Graeme McDowell, 46 Soren Hansen, 48 Simon Dyson, 52
Peter Hanson, 53 Edoardo Molinari, 57 Alexander Noren, 60 Miguel Angel Jimenez, 65 Ross McGowan, 66 Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, 70
Chris Wood, 72 Justin Rose, 84 Shane Lowry, 87 Martin Laird, 92 Anthony Wall, 94 Gregory Bourdy