MEXICO CITY, Mexico – With one week remaining until the best players in the world gather in Mexico City, Roberto Diaz has officially qualified for the World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship as the top-ranked Mexican player in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR). At No. 472 in the world, Diaz edged out fellow countryman Rodolfo Cazaubon (No. 510) for a spot in the field at Club de Golf Chapultepec March 1-5.
The new eligibility qualification category allowed the top-ranked Mexican player in the OWGR as of Feb. 20 to qualify for the Mexico Championship. After entering the Tour’s Club Colombia Championship by Servientrega outside the top 700 in the world two weeks ago, Diaz fired a final-round 7-under 64 for the clubhouse lead before Ethan Tracy holed out from 101 yards to force a playoff. Tracy eventually bettered Diaz in the playoff, but the runner-up finish allowed him to take the top spot in the world amongst his fellow competitors from Mexico.
At the Tour’s Panama Claro Championship this past weekend, Diaz’s spot as the top-ranked Mexican player was in jeopardy with Abraham Ancer in contention over the weekend. With Diaz finishing T19, Ancer needed to finish in a tie for second or better to overtake Diaz in the rankings. With a final-round 3-under 67, Ancer finished solo fourth, narrowly missing out on the opportunity to be Mexico’s representative at the Mexico Championship.
Diaz is joined by several players that also officially qualified for the Mexico Championship as of Feb. 20. Ten players inside the top 50 in the OWGR that were not otherwise exempt included Belgium’s Thomas Pieters (No. 33) and Spain’s Jon Rahm (No. 38). Pieters shot a final-round 8-under 63 at the Genesis Open to finish T2 to improve his position in the top 50 in the world by 14 spots. PGA TOUR rookie Rahm skipped the Genesis Open but has had a memorable month that included his first career PGA TOUR victory at the Farmers Insurance Open and a T5 finish at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.
Those players still outside the top 50 in the OWGR will have one final chance to qualify on Feb. 27 following the conclusion of The Honda Classic. The top 10 players in the FedExCup standings that are not yet exempt will also qualify following The Honda Classic.
On the European Tour, the players inside top 10 in the Race to Dubai standings that were not already exempt officially qualified for the Mexico Championship. With no movement in the top 10 following the ISPS Handa Super 6 Perth, four players qualified including Paraguay’s Fabrizio Zanotti and Spain’s Pablo Larrazabal. Australia’s Brett Rumford, who captured his sixth career European Tour title at the ISPS Handa Super 6 Perth and first since 2013, jumped to No. 11 in the standings with the win.