May 25, 2011 / 10:55 AM / 9 years ago

Schwartzel and Kaymer scoop European Tour awards

Charl Schwartzel (C) of South Africa receives his green jacket after winning the 2011 Masters golf tournament at the Augusta National Golf Club, April 10, 2011. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

VIRGINIA WATER, England (Reuters) - U.S. Masters champion Charl Schwartzel has become the sixth South African to be awarded honorary life membership of the European Tour.

“It is a great privilege to honour Charl in this way with the highest award we as a tour can bestow,” chief executive George O’Grady said in a news release on Wednesday.

The 26-year-old Schwartzel joined compatriots and fellow major winners Gary Player, Ernie Els, Retief Goosen, Trevor Immelman and Louis Oosthuizen as honorary life members.

Martin Kaymer has also been voted by his fellow professionals as the 2010 European Tour Players’ Player of the Year.

The 26-year-old German won four times last year, including the U.S. PGA Championship, and was a member of Europe’s triumphant Ryder Cup team.

“What I achieved (last year) was unbelievable,” said Kaymer after receiving his award.

“I have to thank Padraig Harrington for it. When he won the 2007 British Open and then two more majors in 2008 he gave Europeans the belief that we could win majors as well.”

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