The Golfer of the Year – an award Ballesteros won on three occasions in 1986, ‘88 and ‘91 – is voted for by the golf media. He beat off competition from Rose, Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrrell Hatton and Rookie of the Year Jon Rahm...
Alfred Dunhill Links Championship: Howell Crowned Winner
England’s David Howell won his first title since 2006 by overcoming American Peter Uihlein in a scintillating play-off encounter for the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
38-year-old Howell won with a terrific birdie to Uihlein’s par at the second extra hole, the 18th at St Andrews, for his fifth European Tour victory. Both players ended on 23 under after Howell shot a five-under 67 and Uihlein a 69.
Fellow Englishman Tom Lewis, as well as Ireland’s Shane Lowry were one stroke off the pace with England’s Tommy Fleetwood at 21 under.
Howell's last victory came in the European Tour's flagship PGA Championship at Wentworth seven years ago; several months after holding off Tiger Woods to clinch the HSBC Champions Tournament.
A jubilant Howell later told Sky Sports: "I've never played an Open Championship here and that's still a dream, but to win a tournament here at the home of golf is amazing.
"It's been a long, long road back from the depths of despair. I have had a lot of support from people around me and this is as much for them as it is for me."
Howell’s wife Emily is expecting twins in December, and Howell added: "The downs were pretty low and I lost my way in life and on the Tour as well. Off-course I was not a happy camper and made some bad decisions around 2008 and took some time to sort through them. I owe Emily a debt of gratitude for having me back and showing me that we were always going to be a happy couple in the end.
"This is a sweet moment to be happy and settled with Emily and Freddie at home and the twins on the way and to win a massive championship seals the deal.
"Hopefully, it can spur me onto bigger and better things."
Alfred Dunhill Links Championship Final Leaderboard:
-23: P Uihlein (US), *D Howell (Eng) * wins after play-off -22: T Lewis (Eng), S Lowry (Ire) -21: T Fleetwood (Eng) -20: G Mulroy (SA) Selected others: : -18 D Clarke (NI) -17 : E Els (SA) -16: P McGinley (Ire)