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Will Zalatoris named PGA Tour rookie of the year

Will Zalatoris has been named the PGA Tour rookie of the year in a vote by his peers following a season in which he counted a Masters runner-up showing among his eight top-10 finishes.

Zalatoris was selected for the Arnold Palmer Award over Garrick Higgo, making the 25-year-old American the first PGA Tour special temporary member to win rookie of the year honours since Charles Howell III in 2001.

“Will’s success despite not having PGA Tour membership status at the outset of the 2020-21 season is a testament to not only his ability but also his hard work and attitude,” PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan said in a news release.

Zalatoris earned a spot in the 2020 US Open last September after changes to the tournament’s eligibility criteria and finished in a tie for sixth.

He competed in all four majors in 2021, three World Golf Championship events and The Players Championship, with top-10 finishes in three of those eight tournaments.

Zalatoris was the only player to shoot under par in all four rounds at Augusta National in April but his bid to become the first Masters debutant since 1979 to slip on the Green Jacket came up short as he finished one shot behind Hideki Matsuyama.

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