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ATWAL WINS JOHNNIE WALKER ASIAN GOLFER OF THE YEAR AWARD

India's Arjun Atwal earned another feather in his cap when he was named the Johnnie Walker Asian Golfer of the Year for a majestic 2003 season.

The talented Atwal was announced the winner of the prestigious award at a Gala Dinner held for the Johnnie Walker Classic, which was staged at the Alpine Golf & Sports Club.

Atwal wrote several new pages in Asian golf history en route to winning the Order of Merit title in Asia for the first time in his career. In February, he claimed his second European Tour victory following a memorable triumph over South Africa's Retief Goosen in the Carlsberg Malaysian Open.

He later made more international headlines by becoming the first Asian player to surpass US$1 million in career earnings with his victory at the Hero Honda Masters on home soil and capped a tremendous season by securing his US PGA Tour card at the Qualifying School Finals, finishing tied seventh.

In realising his lifelong dream of securing his playing privileges in America, Atwal won the accolade of becoming the first Indian to achieve this feat.

Atwal was unable to attend the dinner as he was in America last week. In 2002, the award went to Korean star Choi Kyung-ju.

Australia's Adam Scott was named the recipient of the Johnnie Walker Young Golfer of the Year award after producing another impressive season in 2003 where he achieved a career breakthrough victory on the US PGA Tour and ended the year in a career best 25th place on the Official World Golf Ranking.

The 23-year-old Scott won the Deutsche Bank Championship in Boston to add to his Scandic Carlsberg Scandinavian Masters victory which was achieved a month earlier.

Scott turned professional in 2000 and needed only eight starts to clinch his European Tour card. He received the award from last year's winner, Justin Rose of England, who is also a close friend.

 

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