LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. and ST ANDREWS, SCOTLAND (April 19, 2023) – Rose Zhang, 19, of Irvine, Calif., has broken the record for the total number of weeks as the No. 1 golfer in the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking®/WAGR®.
Zhang has now spent 136 weeks as the world’s leading female amateur golfer, surpassing the record total of 135 weeks set by Leona Maguire of the Republic of Ireland in 2018. The record for male amateur golfers is 87 weeks, held by Keita Nakajima of Japan.
The Stanford University sophomore ascended to the No. 1 position in WAGR® for the first time in September 2020 and has also gone on to beat Lydia Ko’s record of 130 consecutive weeks by remaining at the top of the ranking ever since.
“It’s an unbelievable honor and a testament to a lot of hard work not just by me but by my team as well,” said Zhang. “Passing names like Lydia and Leona on any list is incredible; they’ve both gone on to have such impressive professional careers and are great role models in golf. I’m grateful for all the support I’ve received and look forward to continuing to pursue my dreams in this game.”
“I want to congratulate Rose on this amazing achievement,” said Maguire. “It takes so much hard work and determination to become the world’s number one amateur golfer and to consistently hold that position for a record-breaking number of weeks shows just how good a golfer Rose really is. She is a future star of the game.”
Zhang was awarded the Mark H. McCormack Medal in 2020, 2021 and 2022 as the world’s leading women’s amateur golfer, joining Maguire and Ko as the only three-time recipients of the accolade.
Notable wins during this time include the recently held Augusta National Women’s Amateur, the 2022 NCAA Division I Championship, the 2021 U.S. Girls’ Junior and the 2020 U.S. Women’s Amateur. Last year, she also won the Smyth Salver as the leading amateur at the AIG Women’s Open at Muirfield, finished T-11 at the Chevron Championship in 2020 and has amassed a 6-1-2 record in two Curtis Cup Matches for the USA Team (both team victories).
“Rose continues to build upon an exceptional amateur career, and all of us at the USGA would like to congratulate her on this incredible record-breaking achievement,” said John Bodenhamer, USGA chief championships officer. “She has become a role model to so many young girls around the world and has consistently performed at the highest levels in the amateur game. We know this is only the start of what will be a long and impactful career in golf.”
Professor Steve Otto, chief technology officer at The R&A, said, “We would like to congratulate Rose on these record-breaking achievements at the highest level of women’s amateur golf, including her recent success at the Augusta National Women’s Amateur. She has consistently delivered outstanding results for some time now and continues to show why she is so highly regarded in the sport. We look forward to seeing her compete in the AIG Women’s Open once more at Walton Heath this year.”
About the USGA
The USGA is a nonprofit organization that celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment, handicapping and amateur status rules. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, N.J., is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.
About The R&A
References in this document to The R&A are to R&A Rules Limited. Together The R&A, based in St. Andrews, Scotland, and the USGA govern the sport of golf worldwide, operating in separate jurisdictions but with a commitment to a single code for the Rules of Golf, Rules of Amateur Status and Equipment Standards. The R&A governs the sport worldwide, outside of the United States and Mexico, on behalf of over 36 million golfers in 144 countries and with the consent of 159 organizations from amateur and professional golf.
The R&A aims to invest £200 million in developing golf over a decade and supports the growth of the sport internationally, including the development and management of sustainable golf facilities. For more information visit randa.org