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Bubba climbs to 3rd in World Rankings after playoff win

Bubba Watson’s 8th career PGA Tour triumph — he won the Travelers Championship in a playoff Sunday — moved the lefty to No. 3 in the latest Official World Golf Ranking behind Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth.

Both McIlroy and Spieth were idle last weekend after the U.S. Open. Bubba (16-under) outlasted England’s Paul Casey on the second playoff hole at TPC River Highlands in Connecticut to win his first title of 2015 and first since the 2014 Masters Tournament.

Watson opened the week with 8-under-62 and then went on to win the championship — site of his first PGA Tour win in 2010 — as a 14-to-1 betting selection at www.skybet.com. Casey finished runner-up for the second time this season but continues to trend well (he was also T-5 at the Match Play losing to eventual champion McIlroy in the semi-finals). Casey, who finished 2014 at No. 75, moved from 35th to 23rd in the world rankings.

Brian Harman, Graham DeLaut and Carl Pettersson rounded out the Top 5, while Zach Johnson, Luke Donald, Bo Van Pelt and Mark Wilson logged Top 10 efforts.

Lots of movement in the Top 10 this week.

An idle Justin Rose fell three spots to No. 7. Dustin Johnson, a runner-up at the U.S. Open, slipped to 4th followed by Jim Furyk and Henrik Stenson. Jason Day sits at No. 8 just ahead of Rickie Fowler and Sergio Garcia.

Pablo Larrazabal (17-under) edged Stenson by a shot to win the European Tour’s BMW International in Germany. It was the second time Larrazabal has won the event. The victory jumped him 118th to to No.69 in the world rankings. He was a 50-1 long shot to win the title heading into the week.

Other Golf News:

  • Jeff Maggert (10-under) won his second major on the Champions Tour this season capturing the 36th U.S. Senior Open by two shots. With a half dozen players tied for the lead early on Sunday, Maggert separated himself in the middle of the round at Del Paso Country Club in Sacramento. Colin Montgomerie was second, while Bernhard Langer and Grant Waite tied for third at 7-under. Maggert, a 20-1 pick to start the week, won three times on the PGA Tour during his career and racked up 16 runner-up finishes.
  • Na Yeon Choi shot 69 Sunday to finish 15-under and win the LPGA Tour’s Walmart NW Arkansas Championship. Trailing by defending champion Stacy Lewis by a shot, Choi rallied with back-to-back 2s on her score card including a hole-out eagle-2 at the par-4 16th hole. Lewis finished T-3 alongside Azahara Munoz and Anna Nordqvist. Lydia Ko shot 63 in the final round to finish T-6 with Paula Creamer.
  • Casey logged his sixth Top 10 of the season shooting 5-under-65 in the final round at the Travelers.
  • Tiger Woods, who has slipped to No. 220 in the world rankings, returns to action this week at The Greenbrier Classic.
  • Choi was a 66-1 selection to win the¬†Walmart NW Arkansas Championship.¬†It was her 9th career LPGA Tour title and second of the 2015 season. She won in Florida at the season-opening Coates Golf Championship in January.