Rory McIlroy has beaten off stiff competition to be named 2018-19 PGA TOUR Player of the Year.
The award is voted for by fellow PGA TOUR players and it was McIlroy who earned the Jack Nicklaus Award after a hugely consistent season which saw the Northern Irishman win three times including the season-ending Tour Championship and FedEx Cup series.
His season may not have been enough to take him back to world number one status or add to his four career major wins, but his fellow tour stars were impressed enough to name McIlroy as their Player or the Year ahead of fellow finalists Brooks Koepka, Matt Kuchar and Xander Schauffele.
“I am very proud of my consistency and success this season so it is an incredible honor to have my fellow PGA TOUR players recognise me as the Player of the Year,” McIlroy wrote on social media along with a picture of himself lifting the Jack Nicklaus Award. “Already looking forward to next season!”
I am very proud of my consistency and success this season so it is an incredible honor to have my fellow @PGATour players recognize me as the Player of the Year.
Already looking forward to next season! pic.twitter.com/9IXIV2xxDU
— Rory McIlroy (@McIlroyRory) September 11, 2019
He had been presented with the trophy while enjoying dinner with Nicklaus, and proclaimed to have goosebumps in the video shown on social media.
“It’s a huge vote of confidence from the players that we play for more than just what the narrative suggests,” McIlroy added. “I thought Brooks winning the PGA Championship this year would be the difference-maker, but the other players thought differently.”
It is the third time that McIlroy has won the award, having also been named Player of the Year in 2012 and 2014, and caps a memorable year in won the Players Championship, the Canadian Open and the $15 million Tour Championship.
In total, McIlroy made 19 PGA TOUR appearances this season and finished in the top 10 on 14 occasions. He also missed just two PGA TOUR cuts, and his stats backed up just how consistent a season he had. He was first for shots gained off the tee, tee to green and overall and finished with the highest total this decade.
The PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year award went to Sungjae Im, who took home Arnold Palmer Award.
Cameron Champ, Adam Long, Collin Morikawa and Matthew Wolff were also shortlisted for the award in their breakout seasons, but it was the consistency of Im which earned him the Rookie of the Year title.
Im was the only rookie to make it through to the season-ending Tour Championship after a season featuring in 35 tournaments, 26 of which he made the cut. He claimed seven top-10 finishes and 16 top 25 finishes, while also topping the stats for rounds in the 60s (60), hole outs (25) and birdies (480).
See also: Rory McIlroy Crowned 2019 PGA Tour Champion
Rory McIlroy Set to Defend FedExCup Title
THE PLAYERS: McIlroy’s Year in Review
Rory McIlroy ‘Confident’ to Win Grand Slam Despite Falling Short at 2018 Masters