Behind an amazing golf talent is a team of passionate and dedicated individuals that try to inspire and get the best out of their golf prodigies. Teenage golf sensation Lydia Ko has just the man for that job. Westlaker and golf coach extraordinaire Guy Wilson has been working with Lydia since she walked into the pro shop at Pupuke Golf Course. Guy, only 22 years old and an apprentice golf instructor was behind the counter and the pair formed a partnership unlike any seen in New Zealand golf since Michael Campbell and Mal Tongue teamed up.
Guy attended Westlake from 1993-1997 and at the age 13 was encouraged to play golf on Wednesday afternoons when choosing a sport to practice at school. He was a member of the 1997 Senior Golf Team that played in the North Harbour Inter-Collegiate tournament and recalls spending a lot of time in the C Block computer rooms researching all things golf. Guy also enjoyed playing touch between B and D Block, the woodwork sessions with Mr Norton and he’ll never forget the bottle green PE shirts worn during Mr Ivonov’s PE lessons.
Since leaving school Guy pursued a career in golf, and more so golf tuition, sporting a variety of national and international golf qualifications. He is the Director of Instruction at Institute of Golf in Albany and since meeting Lydia, developed her into the worldwide golfing phenomenon and Number One Female Amateur in the World she is today. In the early days when Lydia had just started school, Guy found a way to engage her, to make the lessons fun, with humour and challenges. He realised her special talent when she made the cut at the New Zealand Open as a 12 year old. Nowadays Guy constantly upskills to stay in touch with Lydia’s ever developing talent and uses New Zealand Golf’s state-of-the-art technology to help them in their quest. That the proof is in the pudding is shown by Lydia’s latest achievement – this week she successfully defended her Canadian Women’s Open title and thus her reign as “Queen of Canada” was extended for at least another year.
As a coach Guy uses a holistic approach and his passion for teaching grows day by day which makes him the ideal instructor for any player looking to take their game to the next level. When Guy is not busy coaching golf, he finds time to play indoor cricket with a group of fellow Westlakers and share their memories of Westlake yesteryears.
Some prominent golf players that have come from Westlake in recent years include Cameron Jones, Richard Lee, Kevin Chun, Scott Johnson and more recently Jason Gulasekharam. Watch this space for more talent to make their mark on New Zealand Golf territory. Westlake’s current Premier Golf Team will represent North Harbour at the Golf New Zealand Final and New Zealand U19 Championships next week in Christchurch. The WBHS team won the North Harbour and Auckland Championship titles for three consecutive years.