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Lydia Ko's reign as No.1 about to end

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/06/2017
Lydia Ko © Getty Images Lydia Ko

One of two players could be women's world golf No.1 by the end of the week.

And Lydia Ko isn't either of them.

The New Zealander is sitting out this week's LPGA Classic in New Jersey as part of a three-week mid-season break, opening the door for the two women who have closed on the top spot in recent weeks.

Second-ranked Ariya Jutanugarn is also absent this week but will move ahead of Ko in the rankings regardless of the outcome.

Jutanugarn will become the first golfer from Thailand to hold the top spot if Korea's So Yeon Ryu finishes fourth or worse at the three-round tournament.

The 20-year-old Ko, who began her second stint at No.1 in October 2015, has occupied the throne for the third-longest reign since the ranking system was founded 11 years ago.

Mexican Lorena Ochoa (2007-10) holds the record at 158 successive weeks while Taiwan's Yani Tseng (2011-13) notched 109 weeks.

Ko's winless record in tournaments since July last year has resulted in a gradual deterioration of her lead.

She sits just 0.07 ranking points ahead of Jutanugarn and 0.19 ahead of Ryu.

Ko will return for the Meijer Classic in Michigan from June 15, beginning a schedule which will feature three majors over the seven subsequent tournaments.

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