London: Luke Donald, who this season became the first player to win the orders of merit on both sides of the Atlantic, was named the European Tour Golfer of the Year on Thursday.

"The manner in which I came through to win both money lists was, I think, the thing that pleased me the most about the season," the British world number one said in a statement.

"Going to Florida and winning the Disney Classic in October, when I had to (to top the U.S. money list) was very important as it gave me the incentive to go on and succeed in Dubai."

Donald, who is competing in this week's Australian Masters, finished third at the Dubai World Championship on Sunday to secure the number one spot in the European money list.

The 34-year-old won the European order of merit despite playing six fewer tournaments than runner-up Rory McIlroy, the US Open champion.

The judging panel for the Golfer of the Year award features journalists from newspapers and magazines as well as commentators from radio and television.

(Agencies)