Robert Karlsson has been named The European Tour Golfer of the Month for September in recognition of his superb victory in the Mercedes-Benz Championship at Golf Club Gut Lärchenhof.
The 39 year old strengthened his position as the most prolific Swedish winner in the history of The European Tour International Schedule with this, his eighth title overall, and his third in Germany following his successes in the 1997 BMW International Open and his triumph in the 2006 Deutsche Bank Players’ Championship of Europe.
Karlsson withstood a strong final day challenge from Italy’s Francesco Molinari at the Cologne venue to maintain his reputation as one of the most accomplished front runners in Europe with seven of his eight victories having come after he led going into the final day.
It also finally saw him notch a win during a sensational 2008 season where he had previously registered nine top ten finishes; including ending tied eighth in the Masters Tournament, tied fourth in the US Open Championship and tied seventh in The Open Championship.
“Obviously I am delighted to be named as the Golfer of the Month for September on The European Tour,” said Karlsson. “It is great to be acknowledged for all the hard work you put in over a season and this award recognises what was a wonderful win for me in the Mercedes-Benz Championship in Cologne.
“I always enjoy playing in Germany not least for the fact that the tournaments there are always very well run and everything about them is very well organised. I have had success in the country in the past too, so it was nice to go there and win again. It was also nice to get a win under my belt in 2008, because it would have felt a bit strange not to have won this season as I had been playing so well up to that point.”
Karlsson faced strong competition for the September award, which was voted for by a panel of golfing journalists from newspapers, magazines, television and radio. Singled out for particular praise were Spaniard Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño for his victory in The Quinn Insurance British Masters at The Belfry, and Frenchman Jean-François Lucquin for his maiden European Tour triumph in the Omega European Masters at Crans-sur-Sierre.
Also commended were Spaniard Miguel Angel Jiménez for his third place finishes in both the Omega European Masters and the Mercedes-Benz Championship, and Ian Poulter for finishing The Ryder Cup at Valhalla Golf Club as top points scorer from the 24 players in action, the Englishman registering four points out of five over the three days of competition.
The Golfer of the Month Award winners thus far in 2008 have been: Germany’s Martin Kaymer (January), Mark Brown of New Zealand (February), Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland (March), Trevor Immelman of South Africa (April), Spaniards Sergio Garcia (May) and Pablo Larrazabal (June) and Ireland’s Padraig Harrington (July and August). At the end of the year, all monthly winners will be amongst the players considered by the panel for The European Tour Golfer of the Year.