New hire caddied for Baker-Finch, trained under Leadbetter
DANANG, Vietnam (Oct. 27, 2010) – Phil Wright, Australian PGA professional and former caddie of 1991 British Open champion Ian Baker-Finch, is the latest golf industry luminary to join the management team at Danang Golf Club, one of Southeast Asia’s most lauded new golf venues.
Wright, who was on the bag of countryman Baker-Finch during his ascent in the world rankings in the 1980s, took over as Danang GC’s head golf professional last week, joining general manager and former Welsh Amateur Champion Howie Roberts on a staff that is fast becoming the regional standard.
Wright’s experience as an instructor made him the obvious choice, said Roberts.
“It’s not every day the only Australian PGA member with David Leadbetter Teaching Academy certification comes knocking on your door,” said Roberts. “We’ve filled one of the final pieces to our puzzle.”
Wright’s journey to Danang Golf Club began in 1987. After parting ways with Baker-Finch that year, he embarked on a career in management and instruction, starting with a three-year PGA trainee position at Dorset Golf Course in Melbourne, Australia.
That led to an 11-year stint as the director of operations for Cheltenham Golf Club, in Australia’s storied Sandbelt region.
In 2002, Wright ventured overseas to Shenzen, China, where for three years he served as senior golf instructor at Mission Hills Golf Club’s David Leadbetter Golf Academy.
He then returned to Melbourne to take the reins as director of golf for Glen Waverley Golf Course, one of Victoria state’s leading public-access facilities.
“Golf has provided me with so many incredible opportunities over the past 30 years,” said Wright. “But this one, with Danang Golf Club, might be the best of all. The reputation it’s built, new as it is, is not only impressive. It’s much deserved.”
Opened in May of this year, Danang GC has been quick to attract international media attention for its centerpiece – the Greg Norman-designed Dunes Course, a collection of 18 rugged, seaside holes that crisscross a sand-based landscape similar to the coastal terrain of Scotland, golf’s birthplace.
In its August issue, Golf World (UK) compared the Dunes Course to Pinehurst and Pine Valley, in the U.S. In June, Hong Kong Golfer called the layout “jaw-dropping.”
Wright will ply his trade from the practice facility, one of the most spectacular in Asia. It includes a driving range that faces the stunning Marble Mountains; a 1,600-square-metre chipping/putting green; and three indoor custom club-fitting labs with video swing analysis devices.
When finished, Danang GC will also feature a 3,800-square-metre clubhouse by Australian architecture firm Hassell; four- and five-star hotels; and multiple residential enclaves totaling up to 300 luxury homes.
VinaCapital Group, Vietnam’s leading asset management, investment banking and real estate consulting firm, owns the property.
For more information about Danang GC, visit www.dananggolfclub.com.