Scottie Scheffler won the WM Phoenix Open for the first time on Sunday, defeating fellow Ryder Cup player Patrick Cantlay in a three-hole playoff.
Another first came with the breakthrough victory: a berth in the top ten of the Official World Golf Ranking.
Scheffler, a former U.S. Junior Amateur champion and All-American at the University of Texas, was destined to be one of the world’s best professional golfers, and he has now climbed to a career-high ninth place. This is a six-spot gain from Scheffler’s previous-week rating of 15th, and it moves Cameron Smith from ninth to eleventh place.
Scheffler was characteristically modest when asked about the significance of his victory. He claimed he had never given much thought to when his first title would arrive.
“I just like striving to get better,” Scheffler added. “I enjoy attempting to improve. Out here, I enjoy playing golf. It’s enjoyable for me. It feels like I’m supposed to be here. So far, all I’ve done is try to prepare and get ready. Only when you guys ask me these kinds of questions do I actually think about it.
“As for Cantlay, he moved from fourth to third position by swapping places with Viktor Hovland. Brooks Koepka, who had earlier in the week expressed his embarrassment at being ranked 20th in the world, tied for third and advanced five spots to No. 15.