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...
Bulgarian Swing Hailed A Success
The world’s best golfers hailed the Volvo World Match Play Championship at Thracian Cliffs Golf and Beach Resort a huge success as Graeme McDowell lifted the trophy to win the title and the £675,000 first prize.
It was McDowell’s second victory in three tournaments adding his his RBC Heritage win last month to his victory in Bulgaria.
The top seed beat Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee 2&1 in a hard-fought final, taking the lead for the first time on the 14th and then making a birdie on the next as he became the first Irish winner of a tournament dating back to 1964.
Arnold Palmer won the inaugural event and the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Seve Ballesteros, Nick Faldo, Greg Norman and Ernie Els all triumphed at Wentworth before the tournament moved to Finca Cortesin in Spain in 2009.
McDowell believes the gamble of taking the 24-man event to Bulgaria paid off despite admitting the field needs to be stronger and that the spectacular course on the edge of the Black Sea has one or two "funky" holes.
The new Number Seven in the Official World Golf Ranking, said: “It has been a fantastic week and I have enjoyed it very much. Everyone has been so welcoming and I would like to thank everyone here at Thracian Cliffs, the Bulgarian Golf Association and the Bulgarian Government. It will sound easy for me to say because I am standing here with a magnificent trophy in my hands, but I think if you ask all of the players who came here this week they will all tell you how enjoyable it has been to come to Bulgaria.
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