Sergio Garcia, who returns to play in the SMBC Singapore Open in January, has been named the European Tour Golfer of the Year for 2017, receiving the prestigious annual award for the first time.
The Spaniard enjoyed a phenomenal 12 months on the global stage, winning three times on the European Tour, including an emotional first Major Championship at the Masters in April.
The 37 year old defeated his Ryder Cup team-mate Justin Rose in a play-off to become the third Spaniard to claim the famous Green Jacket, following in the footsteps of his compatriots Seve Ballesteros and José María Olazábal.
Garcia’s victory came on the day the legendary Ballesteros would have turned 60, and in recognition of his achievements throughout 2017, a panel consisting of members of the golfing media voted him as winner of the European Tour Golfer of the Year award for 2017, an award Ballesteros won on three occasions – in 1986, 1988 and 1991.
“This is an amazing honour,” said Garcia, whose year of celebration also included marrying his fiancée Angela Akins in July. “I think both on and off the golf course it has been a unique and unbelievable year, and one that I will definitely remember my whole life.
“I am so happy to receive this award, and to be named the European Tour Golfer of the Year, against the calibre of players that were in contention is incredible. Tommy, Justin, Tyrrell and Jon are all amazing players, and all had unbelievable years themselves.
Garcia’s 2017 European Tour campaign got off to the perfect start with a wire-to-wire victory in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in February – his first European Tour title in three seasons.
Two months later the Spaniard triumphed at Augusta, fulfilling the raw potential he showed when finishing runner-up in the US PGA Championship in 1999.
He completed an outstanding season when he went on to lift his third title of 2017 on home soil in October with victory in the Andalucia Valderrama Masters, an event hosted by his own Foundation.
He finished the year in fourth position in the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex.