No Scottish golfer left in men’s world top 100

Scotland's Martin Laird has risen 14 places in the world rankings but is still just outside the top 100. Picture: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
Scotland's Martin Laird has risen 14 places in the world rankings but is still just outside the top 100. Picture: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
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For the first time in nearly eight years, Scotland doesn’t have a single representative in the top 100 in the men’s world rankings.

The disappointing situation – not since July 2010 has the 
Saltire been absent at that lofty level – follows Russell Knox dropping three spots to 101st in the latest standings to sit two places above compatriot Martin Laird.

Knox was as high as 18th after winning the Travelers Championship on the PGA Tour in 2016, having made a big jump prior to that when claiming the WGC-HSBC Champions in China.

The Inverness man was still inside the top 50 after last year’s Open Championship but has slowly been slipping down the rankings over the past few months.

In addition to Knox, Laird, Richie Ramsay, Stephen Gallacher, Paul Lawrie and Marc Warren all had spells in the top 100 since that last low point for the sport in its 
birthplace.

The current situation means that Scotland doesn’t have a representative in this week’s WGC event in Texas, while former winner Sandy Lyle is set to be flying solo in the 
Masters in a fortnight’s time.

Laird, in fairness, has climbed 14 spots since the start of the year and has a return to the top 100 in his sights, with Ramsay and Scott Jamieson next highest on the list in 140th and 141st respectively.

The picture isn’t much better on the women’s front, where Catriona Matthew is now outside the the top 150 in the Rolex rankings after slipping down gradually over the past couple of seasons.

That said, the 48-year-old joined Laura Davies in turning back the clock to record a top-20 finish in her second event of the season on the LPGA Tour, the Bank of Hope Founders Cup in Phoenix.

Matthew, the 2019 Solheim Cup captain, closed with rounds of 68 and 69 for a nine-under-par total to end up joint 20th behind Korea’s Inbee Park, who jumped 10 spots to world No 9 with a five-stroke success.

Davies, 54, recorded her best finish since 2007 as she held on to tie for second. “Now people might stop asking me when I’m going to retire - that’s the best thing about it,” joked the English player of her eye-catching effort.