Donald upset at PGA Tour's decision to delay voting on Player of the Year

luke donald
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Luke Donald isn't happy that the decision to delay the PGA Tour Player of the Year voting came the day after he defeated American Webb Simpson for the money title.
PA Sport

Series: PGA Tour

Published: Wednesday, October 26, 2011 | 7:21 p.m.

Luke Donald is questioning the PGA Tour’s decision to delay the voting for its Player of the Year Award.

Ballot papers were expected to be sent out to PGA Tour players this week, but the voting process has been pushed back by two weeks to enable the WGC-HSBC Champions event in Shanghai to be completed first.

Donald -- who wrapped up the PGA Tour money list in sensational style with a back-nine birdie blitz at the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic on Sunday -- admits he finds the move puzzling at best.

Some have speculated that the PGA Tour is looking for ways to afford an American a greater chance of scooping its biggest prize -- a notion Donald seemed to agree with.

"Why suddenly change the rule the day after Disney? It doesn't make much sense to me," Donald told the Golf Channel.

Donald's wife is expecting the couple's second child shortly, and thus the Englishman is unlikely to compete in Shanghai at the start of next month.

Theoretically that would give the likes of Webb Simpson, Keegan Bradley and Nick Watney, who will all be present, the chance to enhance their claims by securing a third win of the season -- one more than Donald has managed on the PGA Tour schedule.

"I think the decision to add HSBC is a little sketchy," the Englishman continued. "I feel like even if I went to Shanghai and won, they'd find another event to add. To be honest, everything needs to be simplified a little bit for the PGA Tour. There doesn't seem to be a beginning or an end.

"You finish the FedExCup and you think the season is over, then you have the Fall Series and you think that after Disney it's over," he added. "And now they are adding another event."

However, PGA Tour Executive Vice President of Communications and International Affairs Ty Votaw insisted there was nothing sinister in the move to include the event in China.

Votaw revealed that the change was decided upon after a member of the media enquired as to whether the Shanghai tournament was still an official PGA Tour victory. Votaw explained that while it does not count toward the official money list, it is still considered an official win in every other sense.

"If this change wasn't made, you could have had members voting on incomplete information if they voted before HSBC," Votaw declared. "It came down to a question of fairness.

"Nothing whatsoever about this decision takes away the merits of Luke's exemplary performance this year in voter's minds," he added. "But this isn't about Luke Donald. We would have made the decision if Webb Simpson would have won on Sunday."