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Donald loses No.1 ranking after RBC Heritage


First published: April 16, 2012, 6:00 PM IST | Updated: April 16, 2012
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Donald loses No.1 ranking after RBC Heritage
Donald needed to finish eighth or better to retain his number one ranking, but the Englishman tied for 37th.

Hilton Head Island: Sweden's Carl Pettersson won the Heritage Classic at Hilton Head on Sunday to claim his fifth career PGA title as Luke Donald gave up his number one ranking to Rory McIlroy.

Pettersson shot a final round two-under-par 69 to finish the tournament at 14-under, a comfortable five shots clear of his nearest rival, former Masters champion Zach Johnson (70).

Colt Knost's chances of winning his first PGA Tour title ended when he fired a 74 to finish third, a shot behind American Johnson, while Kevin Stadler (68) and Billy Mayfair (69) tied for fourth at six-under.

Donald opened with a 75 on Thursday and never made a move after that, with rounds of 69, 71 and 71, to finish at 2-over 286, which matched his highest total in seven appearances at the RBC Heritage.

Donald needed to finish eighth or better to retain his number one ranking but the Englishman tied for 37th, six shots out of eighth and 16 shots behind Pettersson, ensuring Northern Ireland's McIlroy will leapfrog back to the top.

"Is it a concern? No," Donald said. "Obviously, I'd have liked to have played a bit more consistently this year. I built it up nicely last year through tournaments and winning a bunch. As a result, there's a little bit of fluctuation in the world rankings now."

Largely between Donald and McIlroy.

Donald was ranked No. 1 for 40 weeks, a run that ended following McIlroy's win at the Honda Classic last month. Donald needed just two weeks to reclaim the spot with his victory at the Transitions Championship.

The 22-year-old McIlroy, like most of golf's best, took the week off after the Masters. McIlroy spent part of the week in Copenhagen visiting girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki, according to the tennis star's tweets. McIlroy is not expected to play again until the Wells Fargo Championship in Charlotte, N.C., in three weeks.

Donald will take next week off and then return to action in the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, starting April 26.

Tne outcome was never in doubt after Pettersson birdied three of the first five holes in Sunday. It was his first PGA Tour win since the 2010 Canadian Open and saw him match his countryman Jesper Parnevik's total of PGA Tour titles.

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