PGA Championship

McIlroy: Spieth deserves number one spot

2015-08-17 08:48
Rory McIlroy (AFP)

Kohler - Jordan Spieth failed to add a third major title to his 2015 resume on Sunday, but with his runner-up finish to Jason Day at Whistling Straits, the 22-year-old claimed another coveted honor: the world number one ranking.

Spieth, who had already won this years's Masters and US Open, dislodged Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy from the number one spot he had held for 55 consecutive weeks.

Spieth's solo second place meant McIlroy needed a top-six finish to stay number one, and the 26-year-old came up short with a final-round 69 that left him in 17th place on 279 in his defense of the PGA crown he won at Valhalla last year.

"The way Jordan has been playing and the way I haven't played much this year... if he goes to number one today, it's very deservedly so," said McIlroy, who walked off the course 90 minutes before the last putts fell.

Spieth's rise may have been hastened by the ruptured left ankle injury McIlroy suffered on July 4, which forced him out of title defenses at the British Open and the World Golf Championships Bridgestone Invitational -- where McIlroy regained the top ranking last year.

But McIlroy wasn't quibbling.

"Winning two majors, winning a couple other times this year, had a chance at the Open, has a chance obviously today," he said of Spieth.

"If he was to get to number one today, I'd be the first one to congratulate him because I know the golf you have to play to get to that spot and it has been impressive this year."

Spieth, who has earned more than $10 million this year, collected $1.1 million on Sunday and has been outstanding not just in the majors but on the PGA Tour.

He won the Valspar Championship and John Deere Classic and starting with the Memorial in June hasn't been out of the top four.


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