November 29, 2020

Donald wins PGA Tour player of the year 


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England's Luke Donald plays a ball on the 2nd hole during the final round of the Dubai World Championship golf tournament on Sunday, Dec. 11, 2011 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Already No. 1 in the world, Luke Donald now is No. 1 in the eyes of PGA Tour players.

Donald capped off a sensational season Tuesday by winning PGA Tour player of the year, the most significant of the postseason awards because it’s a vote of the players.

He became the first British player to win the award since it began in 1990.

“It’s a great honour to cap off what has been an amazing year for me,” Donald said from the Australian Masters in Melbourne. “Thank you to all the players for their votes. There was obviously some other worthy people to vote for, and I guess my overall consistency and having to go to Disney and win, and win the money list like I did, was a deciding factor.

“I feel very honoured at the moment.”

Donald won the award over Keegan Bradley, Bill Haas, Webb Simpson and Nick Watney. An official familiar with the results described it as a landslide. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the tour does not release the votes or the order in which the players finished.

Bradley, whose two wins included the PGA Championship, was voted rookie of the year.

It was only the fifth time in the last two decades that the PGA Tour player of the year did not win a major. Even so, Donald made a compelling case, especially at the end of the year.

He won two tournaments, as much as anyone else this year. He won the Vardon Trophy for the lowest adjusted scoring average. He had top 10s in 14 of the 19 tournaments he played, a rate of consistency only Tiger Woods has known in this era.

But it still came down to the end of the year.

Simpson won twice in the last three months of the season, and entered the McGladrey Classic to try to capture the money title. He took over the lead with his runner-up finish, and Donald decided to enter the season finale at Disney.

Needing nothing short of a win, the 34-year-old from England turned in one of the best performances of the year.

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