Henrik Stenson is the winner of the 2013 Golf Writers Trophy following a magnificent season in which he became the first player to complete the lucrative double of the FedEx Cup and the Race to Dubai.
The 37 year old Swede topped the annual poll despite fierce competition from the likes of Justin Rose, who became the first Englishman in 43 years to win the United States Open, and Europe’s Solheim Cup team, who made history by winning on American soil for the first time.
Stenson was clearly flattered to have come out on top and by a convincing margin as well, with almost two-thirds of members of the Association of Golf Writers making him their first choice.
"I think when you look at what others achieved like Justin and the Solheim Cup team it does make it mean that little bit more," said Stenson. "It’s a huge honour and a great reflection on the year I had.
"I’m looking forward to getting a few of these trophies I’ve won into the summer house in Sweden. It has been such a great year that I can have a few in Europe and a few in my house in America!
"What a great thrill it is going to be over Christmas to sit by the fire with my family and take stock of the season, look at trophies such as this one and reflect on the year of my life.
"I have always had a very good relationship with the media. I have tried to be accommodating and taken my time to give decent and honest responses. I think I have been treated very fairly by the media guys too. It is a give and take relationship and I’ve always understood that. I appreciate their support for what I’ve managed to accomplish."
Rose was a clear runner-up for his memorable first success in a major championship at Merion. Making up a glittering top-three were Europe’s leading women, who survived the febrile atmosphere in Denver, Colorado to achieve their record-breaking success against all odds.
Given the nature of these feats, perhaps it wasn’t surprising they dominated the leading positions, but members were also keen to recognise the achievement of Englishman Matthew Fitzpatrick in becoming the world’s leading amateur golfer.
Voted on by members of the AGW and dating back to 1951, the award recognizes outstanding achievements during the year from golfers born or resident in Europe, and European teams. Stenson is the first male Swedish golfer to win. Annika Sorenstam was victorious on two occasions, in 2003 and 2005.
Also featured in the voting this year were: Charley Hull, Graeme McDowell, Thomas Bjorn, Suzann Pettersen, Caroline Hedwall, Ian Poulter, Andrea Pavan, and Victor Dubuisson.