John Rahm describes the world golf rankings as “ridiculous” at the DP World Golf Championships in Dubai

This week Ram was awarded an honorary lifetime membership to the DP World Tour

Jon Rahm called golf’s new world ranking system “laughable” after it left this week’s season-ending Finals on the DP World Tour by half as many points as the regular PGA Tour event being played at the same time in the US.


World number five Ram is one of many leading names here in Dubai for the $10m (£8.4m) DP World Tour Championship.

The 50-man field, restricted to the leading players in the race to Dubai this year, is headed by top seed Rory McIlroy and features eight players in the world’s top 30.

By contrast, the PGA Tour’s RSM Classic in Georgia has only four golfers in the top 30, with No. 12 Tony Finau as its highest ranked competitor. The 156 players to play for Sea Island include world No. 915 Chris Stroud and veteran Davis Love III, ranked 2856th.

“I’ll be as honest as I can be, I think OWGR is now laughable,” Ram said ahead of the Middle East Championships, which starts on Thursday.

Ram added, “I understand what they are trying to do with the depth of the field, but having the best players in the world automatically makes the tournament better.”

“I don’t care what their system says. I think they made a mistake. I think some aspects of that could be beneficial but I think they undervalue the better players.

“The top 30 players of the year shouldn’t be penalized because it’s a smaller pitch. A deeper pitch doesn’t mean a better tournament.

“I could go on and on about it. I think they missed the mark on this situation somewhat.”

Rank points are now determined based on the overall strength of the tournament’s Domain Rank. With just 50 players competing on the ground course at Jumeirah Golf Estates this week, the tournament has a field rating of 121 with the winner taking 22 points.

The full RSM event has a rating of 223.16 with a champion probability of 38.38 points.

These are fed into a ranking calculation which is weighted on the freshness of results and an average determined by the number of counting events each player has played over the past two years.

After Ram’s outburst, DP World’s head of golf, Keith Bailey, who sits on the board of the World Golf Rankings, told BBC Sport there was an initial need to change the rating formula, but he promises to raise Ram’s concerns.

“There is no doubt that John Rahm’s conversation and some other notable changes around OWGR will be a topic at the next board meeting,” he said.

“It is prudent to ask based on our best players and their feedback.

“OWGR is a hot topic for many reasons. There were four universities that did a detailed study and they all came to the conclusion that rankings do not necessarily reflect golf.

“As a result we have implemented a new system. Like any new system you evaluate and adjust if changes are needed.”

Earlier this week, McIlroy backed the new system first implemented in August.

“You have 50 players here, compared to 144 players there,” he said.

So just in terms of how they calculate strengths on the field, they have an extra 90 players to contribute to their field strength.

So the reason this gets 21 points and RSM gets 39 is because the person who wins RSM has to beat 139 other guys. You only have to beat 49 other guys here.

“It’s a fairer system.”

This view puts the Northern Irishman at odds with his fellow Spanish Ryder Cup teammate and Ram doubled down on his criticism of the new format.

“Would you rather win a tournament when you have the number one player in the world there or 30 or 6 there?” said the 28-year-old former US Open winner.

“I think it would be better if you beat the best players in the world. I think a lot of people would agree with me and I think it should reflect that.”

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