Dougherty Named Euopean Player of the Month


England's Nick Dougherty has been named the European Tour Golfer of the Month for January following a spectacular start to the year. He opened with a tie for fourth in the South African Airways Open, then won his first European Tour title in the Caltex Masters, presented by Carlsberg, in Singapore.
The 22-year-old, who was the unanimous choice of a panel comprising members of the media and the European Tour, won in Singapore by fending off the challenges of Thomas Bjrn, Maarten Lafeber and defending champion Colin Montgomerie to win the title by five strokes.
At the South African Airways Open at Durban Country Club, Dougherty closed with rounds of 68-66 to share fourth place behind Tim Clark, then followed up his winning performance by shooting 68-69 in the first two rounds of the Heineken Classic.
Among those considered for the January Award were Vijay Singh, who won the Sony Open in Hawaii, Simon Wakefield, who captured the Dimension Data Pro-Am in South Africa and Ernie Els, whose first three starts of 2005 produced three top-six finishes.