Golfer of the Year
The SGA Tour Golfer of the Year (GOTY) is the annual award for the SGA Tour Member(s) who epitomises the principles of the game and what the SGA Tour stands for: to enjoy sharing a round of golf in good humour with respect and consideration for the laws and traditions of the game and for fellow golfers
At the end of the year, the GOTY winner is announced and presented with the perpetual trophy at the final event of the Tour season: The Tour Championship. 2010 was the first year this prestigious award was presented.
The guiding principle for the GOTY is to recognise fair play, sportsmanship, consideration for others, respect for the rules and traditions of the game and golfing etiquette. These are the foundations upon which golf is built and there is great value in fostering and supporting these ideals. Hence, the GOTY is not an award for the best player, but for excellence in golf. It may be awarded for ongoing achievement through the course of the year, or for a single act of sportsmanship that is a worthy example of what is great about the game of golf.
This award is regarded as one of (if not THE) highest prizes, an SGA Tour golfer can be awarded. It is a captain's award of sorts, for the golfer who has performed, behaved or acted in a way that has enriched the game and helped establish a culture and a code for how we would like to see our golfers represent themselves and The SGA Tour.
"Golf is not built on foundations of a few great deeds by the best golfers - the incredible shots and remarkable triumphs of the game's elite. Golf has been built on, and continues to rely on, many small deeds from golfers everywhere: helping a playing partner look for their temporarily misplaced ball; not talking during someones back-swing; not throwing a club after a poor shot; offering to rake a bunker if you are on the green and your playing partner is having a long day at the beach; lending a hand by moving a trolley, replacing a divot or repairing a pitch mark; recognising a great shot by an opponent; accepting both defeat and victory graciously and with humility; filling two divots every time you make one; or simply remembering to keep sand in your bucket.
"At different times, I have failed at all of these simple tasks, so I know this is an award that I could not win. But it is one that I aspire to be worthy of. Notwithstanding that the road to hell is paved with good intentions, it is possible for us all to improve as golfers. Bobby Jones addressed his petulant tantrums on the course as a youth to transform himself into an icon of sportsmanship. My hope is that by having a Tour award that recognises the best that we can be as golfers, we can encourage and foster an approach from our Tour Members that will make the game more enjoyable for all to participate in." Matthew Pitt, SGA Founder