Tiger Woods Wins Arnold Palmer Invitational, Takes Over World No. 1 Ranking

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMarch 25, 2013

The last few years have been far from perfect for Tiger Woods, but he is once again on top of the golf world after winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational. After leading the field for most of the week, Woods finished with a final score of 13 under par to earn his third tournament victory in 2013. 

According to the PGA Tour, this was enough for Tiger to return to No. 1 in the world golf rankings for the first time since October of 2010:


Tiger Woods is the winner of the @APInv, the new #FedExCup leader and, once again, the top-ranked player in the world. #PGATOUR

The tournament at Bay Hill Club and Lodge was scheduled to end on Sunday, but a storm forced play to be suspended for the day. Here's a look at one of the holes during the late afternoon:

Of course, conditions improved by Monday and play was able to resume.

Rickie Fowler presented a challenge for Woods throughout Round 4. The 24-year-old was down to three-under through 14 holes, but fell apart with a triple bogey on 16. Once dropped on the leaderboard, Justin Rose was the only golfer within range, but he could not catch Tiger. 

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Aside from a few bogeys, the 14-time major champion was almost flawless in the final round. When he drove the ball wide, he recovered by getting back on the green in regulation. When he failed to do that, his putting made up for it. 

Tiger started the final round with three birdies in his first six holes, including this putt on No. 4 that required every ounce of his focus: 

On No. 6, he really had to work hard to earn a birdie. Woods had a poor shot in the bunker, but he made up for it with a beautiful shot that got the ball four feet from the hole:

He then showed off his ability to make long putts with this 26-foot shot on No. 12:

Still, his most impressive hole could very well have been No. 16. Tiger teed off into a fairway bunker, but he placed his next shot onto the green. In his third shot of the par five, he putted the ball less than two feet from the hole:

Woods' complete performance in the final round showed that he is ready to once again dominate the sport and get back to winning majors with consistency. 

Final Leaderboard for 2013 Arnold Palmer Invitational (via PGATour.com)

1 Tiger Woods -13
2 Justin Rose -11
T3 Rickie Fowler -8
T3 Keegan Bradley -8
T3 Mark Wilson -8
T3 Gonzalo Fdez-Castano -8
7 Thorbjorn Olesen -7
T8 William McGirt -6
T8 Henrik Stenson -6
T8 Bill Haas -6
T8 Ken Duke -6
T8 Jimmy Walker -6

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