Donald usurps Westwood as No. 1 golfer

Luke Donald of England throws his putter to his caddie on the ninth hole during the Volvo World...

Luke Donald of England throws his putter to his caddie on the ninth hole during the Volvo World Match Play Championship in Casares, near Malaga southern Spain, May 21, 2011. (REUTERS/Jon Nazca)

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, Last Updated: 12:44 PM ET

Luke Donald won the BMW PGA Championship in a playoff over Lee Westwood on Sunday to become the No. 1 golfer in the world for the first time.

Donald, who squandered several chances earlier this year to take the top spot, including a loss in the Volvo World Match Play Championship final, switched places with Westwood, who nearly retained his top spot.

Had Westwood defeated Donald in the playoff, he would have remained No. 1. Instead, he fell one spot to No. 2.

Donald becomes the third Englishman to be the top golfer since the rankings were created in 1986. Westwood was the second when he ascended to the top toward the end of 2010, and Nick Faldo held the spot four separate times from 1990-92.

Nos. 3 through 6 remained the same, occupied by Martin Kaymer, Phil Mickelson, Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy, respectively.

Matt Kuchar and Charl Schwartzel switched spots, with Kuchar taking No. 7 and Schwartzel No. 10. No. 8 Steve Stricker and No. 9 Paul Casey remained in their positions from last week.

Bubba Watson stayed No. 11, and Ian Poulter jumped three spots to No. 12.

Tiger Woods, who continues to fall as he sits out with an injury, fell one spot to No. 13.

Dustin Johnson dropped one to No. 14, while Nos. 15-18 remained steady with Nick Watney, K.J. Choi, Jim Furyk and Hunter Mahan. Jason Day climbed four spots to No. 19, and Francesco Molinari fell one to No. 20.

Ernie Els was the only player to fall out of the top-20, falling one spot to No. 21.


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