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Donald is PGA Player of the Year

World number one Luke Donald capped a fantastic 2011 when the Englishman was named winner of the 2011 PGA of America player of the year award and the Vardon Trophy for lowest scoring average on Monday.

Though Donald has yet to win one of golf's four major titles, his two PGA Tour victories and remarkably high level of performances on a regular basis were enough to edge out American Webb Simpson.

Simpson, also a double winner on the 2011 PGA Tour, earned 56 points while countryman Nick Watney was third with 48 points.

Donald was Mr. Consistency on the course recording an eye-catching 14 top-10 finishes in 19 PGA Tour starts this year, winning himself the coveted Vardon Trophy for the season's lowest adjusted scoring average.

Donald’s average score of 68.86 relegated Simpson (69.25) to second place with American world number four Steve Stricker (69.36) third.

"This was a tremendous year for me. I answered a lot of critics' questions," Donald said.

The 33-year-old is widely regarded as the front-runner to scoop PGA Tour player of the year honors, which will be announced in early December.

Vying with Donald for this award are Americans Simpson, Keegan Bradley, Stricker and Nick Watney -- all of them double champions on the 2011 PGA Tour.

While PGA Championship winner Bradley is the only one among them to have landed one of the four majors this season, Donald has been the game's leading player and triumphed four times worldwide during 2011.

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