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Rory McIlroy is again voted Player of the Year by fellow professionals

Silver lining: Rory McIlroy celebrates with the FedEx Cup in Atlanta after victory in the Tour Championship
Silver lining: Rory McIlroy celebrates with the FedEx Cup in Atlanta after victory in the Tour Championship
Adam McKendry

By Adam McKendry

Rory McIlroy has been voted PGA Tour Player of the Year after his phenomenal 2019 saw him win three tournaments, including the Tour Championship and the FedEx Cup.

The 30-year-old had one of the most consistent years of his career, making the cut in 17 of his 19 events and recording top-10 finishes in 14 of those, rising all the way to World No.2.

McIlroy was one of the top players in terms of statistics too, leading the entire Tour in strokes gained off the tee, tee-to-green and overall.

It is the third time that the Northern Ireland golfer has won the Jack Nicklaus Award, which is voted for by the Tour's membership.

The Holywood man won the Tour Championship for the second time last month to secure the $15m FedEx Cup title, finishing ahead of American trio Brooks Koepka, Matt Kuchar and Xander Schauffele.

It was widely expected to be a straight shoot-out between McIlroy and Koepka for the Player of the Year honour, with the former beating out the PGA champion.

PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan said: "While there are a number of honours one can receive in this game, PGA Tour Player of the Year has to be among the most satisfying as it comes directly from his peers.

"Rory's season was a model of consistency punctuated by milestone victories and ultimately the FedEx Cup in Atlanta."

McIlroy began 2019 with top-six finishes in his first five competitions and he also went on to win The Players Championship and the Canadian Open.

Meanwhile, a refreshed Martin Kaymer is targeting a second KLM Open title in the Netherlands after taking one of the longest breaks of his career.

Kaymer has not played competitively since the start of August after suffering the disappointment of failing to qualify for The Open and, as first reserve, waiting all day in vain for a late withdrawal at Portrush.

The two-time Major winner then finished 31st in the Barracuda Championship on the PGA Tour and missed the cut in the Wyndham Championship before taking a break for five weeks.

"I needed a break after that super, super busy summer of going from one tournament straight to another and I couldn't prepare for tournaments anymore," the former Ryder Cup star said.

"I took five weeks off because my brother got married two weeks ago and a good friend of mine got married last week.

"The first three weeks I didn't really play golf at all but then the last two weeks I've prepared a little bit for the rest of the season."

Belfast Telegraph


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