Padraig Harrington matched Nick Faldo by becoming just the second European to win the prestigious PGA Player of the Year Award.

And he confessed that his incredible run in Majors over the past two seasons has come as a massive surprise.

Harrington said: “To win two Majors in the middle of the summer, back-to-back, it would be an understatement to say it was a bonus. I couldn't have imagined doing it, three majors in the last 15 months.

“If you told me I was going to win and I could go on and win more majors, but to do it so quickly and to do it so close together, to take the opportunity when I got them, that's very special for me.

“Over the year, I've been the type of player that generally would create an awful lot of opportunities and win a few, where the last couple of years at the majors, more or less most of the opportunities, the real opportunities, I've taken them, which it's a big bonus.

“It's very special and very nice when you get an opportunity like at the PGA coming down the stretch that you actually go and grab it."

Following his Open win at Carnoustie last season, Harrington retained the Open at Royal Birkdale before scooping his third Major title inside 15 months in the US PGA at Oakland Hills.

By winning the PGA Player of the Year Award, he followed in the footsteps of 1990 winner Faldo, who claimed six career Majors.

But the Dubliner also added his name to a list of legends that began with his hero Ben Hogan in 1948 and nine-time winner Tiger Woods.

Although there are still four events remaining on the 2008 US PGA Tour, Harrington racked up an unbeatable lead over Woods in the points list organised by the PGA of America to win their Player of the Year Award.

He can still rack up more gongs with the European Tour Player of the Year, the Harry Vardon Trophy for the Order of Merit and the PGA Tour's Player of the Year awards all still up for grabs.

Harrington went into last night's final round of the 36-hole PGA Grand Slam of Golf in Bermuda tied for the lead with Jim Furyk on two under par - two shots ahead of Retief Goosen and eight clear of Masters champion Trevor Immelman.