Golf: Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn is first South-east Asian to become world No. 1

Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand watches her tee shot on the seventh hole during the final round of the LPGA Volvik Championship on May 28, 2017.
Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand watches her tee shot on the seventh hole during the final round of the LPGA Volvik Championship on May 28, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP/REUTERS) - Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn has seized the world No. 1 ranking from New Zealand's Lydia Ko with neither lifting a club in the LPGA ShopRite Classic - where Ryu So Yeon missed the cut on Saturday to cement the shift.

Ryu, ranked third in the world, had a chance to leapfrog Ariya by finishing third or better in the tournament in Galloway, New Jersey.

But she fired back-to-back rounds of three-over 74 to miss the second-round cut in the 54-hole tournament, where South Korea's Kim In Kyung and American Paula Creamer shared the 36-hole lead after carding identical four-under 67s.

At nine-under 133, Kim and Creamer will head into the final round on Sunday two clear of Swede Anna Nordqvist, Ariya's sister Moriya and South Korean Lee Jeong Eun.

First-round leader Nordqvist battled to an even-par 71, Moriya had a 70 and Lee the same.

Ko will slip from the summit after 84 straight weeks at the top. She's been ranked No. 1 for 103 weeks overall.

Ariya becomes the 10th player to reach No. 1 since the women's rankings were introduced in 2006 and the first from South-east Asia.