The system was introduced in 1986 and divides a golfer’s points total by the number of events in which they’ve played over a two-year window. It came into effect at a time where the world’s top 50 were a pretty core element compared to what is the case now. As The Guardian reports, “Around 2,000 players have a world ranking, with 234 Tours feeding into the points system. Players from outside the world’s top 300 appeared at the 2016 Olympics, illustrating the significance of the system below those at the summit of the game.”
With the overhaul, it’s believed this average point basis will be just about the only constant that’s set to remain, with players now acknowledging that “strength of field” elements - the minimum points available in any given event - may now be skewed, potentially giving a boost to those competing in standard European Tour competitions which now have lowly points status.
Those behind the overhaul believe it will more accurately reflect the global professional tours that are inherent to the golf world. These world rankings are particularly significant as they are used for entry into high-profile tournaments, such as this week’s Masters.