Sophia Popov was expected to make a massive leap in the Rolex Women’s World Rankings, but the biggest jump in the history? Just add that to accolades that go with Popov’s stunning win at the AIG Women’s British Open.
The 27-year-old German, who didn’t have LPGA status, was ranked No. 304 prior to starting play at Royal Troon. But her two-shot triumph allowed her to climb up to No. 24, leaping 280 spots with her one magical tournament.
Prior to Popov’s accomplishment, the biggest jump in rankings happened in 2007. That March, Meaghan Francella won the LPGA Tour’s MasterCard Classic while ranked No. 330 in the world. With the victory, Francella’s lone LPGA title, she moved to No. 77. A huge, 253-spot move, but not as big as Popov’s.
Behind Francella, Jessica Korda won the 2012 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open while ranked No. 285 and moved 203 spots to No. 82.
The lowest ranked player to win a major prior to Popov was Anna Nordqvist, who won the 2009 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship when she was ranked No. 214. She climbed to No. 24 after that win (190 spots).
These numbers give even more context to the incredible, unlikely victory of the now former Symetra Tour player, her major win giving her full status on the LPGA Tour.