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Singh, Sorenstam & Stadler win awards

Vijay Singh, Annika Sorenstam and Craig Stadler are the winners of the Golf Writers Association of America 2004 Player of the Year Awards.

All three players will be honored at the GWAA’s Annual Awards Dinner to be held in Augusta, Ga., on April 6, 2005.

Sorenstam has won the GWAA award four consecutive years and six times in the last 10 years. It is the first GWAA award for both Stadler and Singh.

Singh won nine times this season, including the PGA Championship; set a single season earnings record of $10,905,166 and captured the No.1 spot in the Official World Golf Ranking, toppling Tiger Woods. Singh, who ended a four-year GWAA Player of the Year run by Woods, had 18 top-10 finishes and also won the PGA Tour Player of the Year Award and Vardon Trophy. He was the sixth player in history to win at least nine events in a season and the first since Woods in 2000.

The 41-year-old Singh beat out Ernie Els, who earned his second straight European Tour Order of Merit, won five times worldwide and finished second on the PGA Tour money list and Phil Mickelson, who captured his first major at the Masters.

Sorenstam won eight tournaments, including the McDonald’s LPGA Championship, and went over the $2 million mark in earnings for the fourth consecutive season. Sorentam’s accomplishments are especially notable since she played in just 18 events. She had eight other top-10s and set a new scoring average of 68.6966969, breaking the mark of 69.697368 she posted in 2002. U.S. Women's Open winner Meg Mallon finished second and Grace Park was third in the balloting.

Stadler won five times, including the JELD-WEN Tradition. The 51-year-old former Masters champ had 12 top-10s and led the money list with $2,306,066. He put together a string of three wins at the end of the summer and finished second in Charles Schwab Cup to Hale Irwin. Stadler, who also won the Champions Tour Player of the Year Award, beat out Irwin and Mark McNulty.

The GWAA, founded in 1946, has more than 900 members. The professional organization takes an active role in protecting the interests of all golf journalists, works closely with golf’s major governing bodies and the World Golf Hall of Fame and facilitates a scholarship/internship program which is currently helping students at 17 major U.S. universities.

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