Charl leads South Africans in ranking onslaught

After a successful defence of his Joburg Open title, Charl Schwartzel has now jumped to a career high 23rd in the official world golf ranking, with plenty of other South Africans moving up too.

Tim Clark also made a move back into the top-25 in the world into number 20 after finishing tied for second at the Sony Open in Hawaii. He was ranked 25th at the beginning of the year but lost two places last week after his finish at the PGA Tour season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions.

Louis Oosthuizen also moved up one spot to 18th even though he never actually played any golf this last weekend. Retief Goosen was not so fortunate and dropped one spot to 16th with him also not having played any tournaments this last week.

The highest ranked South African Ernie Els also managed to move back into the elite top-10 even after finishing with a poor four-over par 74 in the final round of the Sony Open. Nevertheless, the Big Easy still seems to be holding onto the form which saw him win the 100th SA Open Championship at the end of last year, and it looks to be a promising year for him once more.

The next climber and now the sixth South African in the top-100 is Rory Sabbatini who moved up three spots to 100th after finishing tied for 13th at the Sony Open. He was in fact 94th at the end of 2010 but dropped a few spots after missing out playing the opening event.

Thomas Aiken’s third place finish at the Joburg Open saw him leap 20 positions from 132nd to 112th and ever closer to getting back into the top-100.

Clark and Sabbatini will be in action once more this coming weekend at the Bob Hope Classic in the US, however all eyes will be on Abu Dhabi as Schwartzel, Aiken, Oosthuizen, Goosen, and James Kingston prepare to take on world number one Lee Westwood as he makes his first start in 2011 in an attempt to put further ground between him and world number two Tiger Woods.

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