A confident, steady Tiger Woods cruised at Bay Hill and reclaimed the No. 1 ranking. But his comeback won't be complete until he wins that elusive 15th major championship, writes Golf Magazine's Alan Bastable.
|Scooped by Jason Darrell|
It grates me to say it, but Tiger Woods is back. But why do I feel this way?
For the first time since I've been commentating on golf, Tiger's at the top of the Official World Golf Rankings.
Last time he was there, my wife and I were sat in our appartment in Tenerife watching the miners being lifted out of a collapsed mine in Chile.
Lee Westwood knocked Tiger off the top of golf's world rankings and the number one spot, despite changing hands a few times, has not lef the UK since.
That was until Monday, when Tiger Woods won the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill for the 8th time in his career and hardly broke sweat to do it.
The only other golfers who look capable of reigning in Tiger at the moment are Brandt Snedeker and Justin Rose.
Whilst the media have been concentrating on 'the comeback', Brandt and Justin are making their own inroads in the OWGR almost under the radar.
True enough, with his win at Bayhill, Tiger has dumped Snedeker off the top of the Fedex Cup leaderboard as well as usurping Rory McIlroy at the top of the OWGR.
But just look where Snedeker and Rose are. Snedeker's holding onto second in the Fedex Cup and has climbed to fifth in the OWGR.
Justin Rose is now third in the OWGR, becoming the highest placed English golfer in the world.
I'm not certain, but I suspect with Westwood and Donald's jaunts as world number one over the past three years, it's the first time Rose has held that lofty position.
But this is where it grates. This is where it hurts, being a European golf fan.
Where has the challenge been from McIlroy, Donald and Westwood to stop what's seemingly an unchallenged domination of golf by arguably the greatest golfer of all time in Woods?
They shared the top three places for so long - and by such a distance - it seems unthinkable that Luke Donald could now be sitting in fourth and Lee Westwood a lowly thirteenth in the OWGR.
Will there be a Major winner from the Eastern Atlantic shores in 2013? Or will US golf dominate?
Will someone other than Justin from UK Golf show that they're interested in winning a title this year? Yes, I'd love to see Justin pick up a major - he's the most deserving golfer from Europe by a long shot.
But honestly, a Rose by any other name would smell as sweet...