Danny Lee receives PGA Tour invite
BY Anthony Powter | US PGA Tour | 2008 Wyndham Championship | General | 09 Aug 2008
World number one amateur Danny Lee today received a sponsor’s invitation to compete in next week’s PGA Tour Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield Country Club, North Carolina.
The invite comes off a stellar few months for Lee with the New Zealander securing the world’s top ranked position from American Rickie Fowler after taking the medallist honours at the Western Amateur before going onto to win the championship.
A week earlier at the Porter Cup, Lee won the William C.Campbell Award a prize given to the player who records the low aggregate score in the Northeast Amateur, Players Amateur and Porter Cup, all three major US amateur events.
The day after winning the Western Amateur, Lee was then the medallist in the US Amateur Qualifier at Piper Glen Golf Club in Springfield, Illinois.
The 18-year-old had hardly time to come to grips with his recent achievements before receiving a phone call that he will remember for some time.
“I got a call this morning asking if I would like to play in a PGA Tour event and immediately became excited about the chance,” said Lee.
“It’s a real test for me to see how my game will be against the best players in the world and I’m really looking forward to the experience.”
The following week after the Wyndham Championship, Lee is scheduled to contest the US Amateur Championship at Pinehurst and despite originally planning to spend the time preparing for his third US Amateur, the change to play a PGA Tour event was too good of an offering to decline.
“Yes, I’ve played a lot of golf lately and have at times felt tired, but I can bounce back,” remarked Lee.
“I’m playing some of my best golf, driving the ball well and my iron play is strong. It will be a great opportunity for me and I’m really thankful for getting this chance.”
The Wyndham Championship is among the oldest events on the PGA Tour with the 2008 tournament representing its 69th year. Such is the significance of the championship that Arnold Palmer will attend the championship’s opening ceremony on Wednesday to mark his 50th anniversary since winning his first green jacket at The Masters in 1958.
This year’s field includes includes defending champion Brandt Snedeker, Vijay Singh, two-time winners Davis Love III and Rocco Mediate, Tim Clark, Carl Pettersson, Lucas Glover, David Toms, David Duval, John Daly and 2007 British Amateur champion Drew Weaver. Earlier in the week 2007 US Open Champion Angel Cabrera, 2007 Masters Champion Zach Johnson and England’s Paul Casey all confirmed their attendance.
It’s fitting to see sponsor’s invitations filtering to the world’s best amateurs and enabling the next wave of golfing talent to experience the hype and buzz of the PGA Tour.
Wyndham Worldwide and Premier Partners, AIG, BB&T Cadillac, Harris Teeter, and VF Corporation are all to be congratulated in enabling undoubtedly one of the most exciting young prospects to hit the sport, to get a chance to test his game on the professional world golfing stage.
Lee was clearly taken back with being given the opportunity but was also very appreciative.
“It was such a surprise but it’s [PGA Tour] where I eventually want to play and I cannot wait as it’s such a great opportunity.”