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Justin Rose named Young Golfer of the Year

England's Justin Rose has been rewarded for his outstanding 2002 season by receiving the Johnnie Walker Young Golfer of the Year Award.

The 22 year old, who won four times around the world last year on three different continents, received the award at the Gala Dinner during the Johnnie Walker Classic in Perth, Australia, from Spain's Sergio Garcia, the 2001 recipient.

"I had no idea I was going to be presented with this and it is a wonderful thrill," said Rose who won twice on The European Tour, in the dunhill championship and the Victor Chandler British Masters, once on the Sunshine Tour in the Nashua Masters, and once on the Japanese Tour in The Crowns Tournament.

"My professional career got off to a bit of a rollercoaster start but I have always appreciated the support from everyone to help me get where I am. Therefore it is gratifying for them too that my achievements have been recognised in this way. It is a great honour.

"It is also nice that I was presented the award by Sergio Garciawho was a worthy winner last year and who is a good friend. We have had several battles already on the golf course and I look forward to many more in the future."

Rose ended the 2002 season in ninth spot on the Volvo Order of Merit with €1.323,528 (£843,898), his best rankings finish since he turned professional in 1998.

Other candidates considered for the award by the judging panel were Charles Howell, who won the Michelob Championship on the US PGA Tour and Adam Scott, who won twice on The European Tour in the Qatar Masters and the Diageo Scottish PGA Championship.

The other winner on the night was Korean golfer K.J. Choi, who received the Johnnie Walker Asian Golfer of the Year Award in recognition of his two victories on the 2002 US PGA Tour, in the Compaq Classic of New Orleans and the Tampa Bay Classic.

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