Deadly Donaldson’s wedge wins Shot of the YearJanuary, 2015
The Welshman's 15th hole approach at Gleneagles helped secure victory for Europe in The Ryder Cup
Jamie Donaldson’s pinpoint approach to the 15th hole at Gleneagles, which helped secure victory for Europe in The Ryder Cup, has been voted The European Tour Shot of the Year for 2014.
Described by the Welshman as “the best shot of my life”, Donaldson’s superb effort eclipsed the ten other nominations for the award, which were drawn from the winners of the Shot of the Month.
With Europe leading by 13½-9½ and needing just half a point to retain The Ryder Cup, Donaldson had the chance to write himself into the history books by sealing victory over Keegan Bradley and ensuring that the trophy would remain in European hands.
Despite the intense pressure on his shoulders, Donaldson duly struck a textbook drive down the 15th fairway, leaving him 146 yards to the flag.
The Ryder Cup rookie then showed nerves of steel by arrowing his pitch to within a foot of the pin and forcing Bradley to concede the hole, sparking scenes of jubilation in Perthshire.
Donaldson said: “It was the perfect distance so I knew I could put a full swing on it and be aggressive. As soon as I hit it, I thought it was going to be good – but I hadn’t realised just how good.
“I said at the time I’ve just hit the shot of my life, given the circumstances. To hit the shot which won us The Ryder Cup was just incredible, and I’m honoured to win The European Tour’s Shot of the Year award, so a big thanks goes to everyone who voted for me.
I said at the time I’ve just hit the shot of my life “I’ll definitely never get tired of talking about that shot. It was such an amazing moment for me, but more importantly for the team. Everyone had put so much effort into that week, so it was nice to get our just rewards at the end of it. I couldn’t have dreamed of a better finale to the best week of my career so far.”
Donaldson’s moment of magic drew 32 per cent of the votes polled by fans of ‘MyEuropeanTour’, beating Charl Schwartzel’s miraculous recovery shot in January’s Volvo Golf Champions into second place.
The South African won 23 per cent of the votes, with Victor Dubuisson earning 13 per cent for his ‘Seve-esque’ escape from a cactus in the final of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship.
The contenders for the Shot of the Year competition were: Schwartzel (January), Dubuisson (February), Miguel Angel Jiménez (March), Danny Willett (April), Rory McIlroy (May), Robert Rock (June), Sergio Garcia (July), Donaldson (August and September), and Henrik Stenson (October and November).