Who's who: Dai Rees

  • Photo of Dai Rees
  • wales.png
  • Photo of Dai Rees
  • wales.png

Who's who: Dai Rees

  • Name:

    David James "Dai" Rees
  • Country:

    Wales
  • Lived:

    [1913-1983]. Born on March 31, 1913 in Fontegary, Glamorganshire, Wales. Died on Sept 10, 1983 in Barnet, London, aged 70.
  • Original/Home Club:

    Aberdare GC, South Wales.
  • Occupation:

    Professional golfer.
  • Turned Pro:

    1929

Roll of Honour

Ryder Cup player (1937, '47, '49, '51, '53, '55, '57, '59, '61); Ryder Cup captain (1955, '57, '59, '61, '67). Winner of numerous professional tournaments in Britain, Europe and South Africa. Appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, CBE (1958).

Did you know?

Rees was one of the leading British golfers either side of the Second World War. He learned the game from his father, who was the golf professional at Leys GC (which no longer exists) and Aberdare GC. In 1937, while in his mid-20s, Rees took over as the golf professional at South Herts Golf Club following the death of Harry Vardon. Like Vardon, he remained in the post until he died. Rees played in nine Ryder Cup matches, as playing-captain in four of them. He was captain of the GB&I Ryder Cup team, who in 1957 recorded their first post-war victory against the USA team, a victory that was not repeated until the European team won in 1985. It was in 1983, aged 70, that Rees succumbed to injuries sustained a few months earlier in a car crash that occured on his way back from watching an Arsenal football match.

Top tournaments won by Dai Rees

1966
Europe
215 (-1)
£500
Teacher's

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

215 (-1)

Prize money

£500

Title sponsor

Teacher's

Played as the Teacher's Senior Professional Tournament (May 25-28; aka British Senior Championship, a 54-hole event). Dai Rees (Wales) beat Flory Van Donck (Belg) in an 18-hole Friday playoff (Rees 71, Van Donck 75). [Coventry GC, Finham, Coventry, Warwicks].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

278

Prize money

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Swiss Open. Dai Rees (Wales) won after a playoff. [GC Crans-sur-Sierre, Crans-Montana, Switzerland].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

278

Prize money

£750

Title sponsor

Daks

Played as the Daks Tournament. Dai Rees (Wales) and Bob Charles (NZ) finished in a tie for first place. Ken Bousfield (Eng) and defending champion Bernard Hunt (Eng) were 2 shots further back in joint third place. [West course, Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, Surrey].

1962
Europe
278
£1,000
Dunlop

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

278

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Dunlop

Played as the Dunlop Masters (June 28-30). Second-placed Ralph Moffitt (Eng) and defending champion Peter Thomson (Aus) finished 2 shots behind Rees (Wales). [West course, Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, Surrey].

1959
Europe
283
£500
UK / Ire PGA

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

283

Prize money

£500

Title sponsor

UK / Ire PGA

Played as the PGA Close Championship (April 8-10; for UK & Ireland professionals only). Second-placed David Snell (Eng) and Bernard Hunt (Eng) finished 6 shots behind Dai Rees (Wales), the first Welshman to win the PGA Championship. [Ashburnham GC, Burry Port, Carmarthenshire, Wales].

1959
Awards
British PGA

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Venue

Score

Prize money

Title sponsor

British PGA

Rees (Wales) won his second Harry Vardon Trophy as the British PGA Tour 1959 Order of Merit winner. Award based on lowest scoring average in the season's top professional events.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

274

Prize money

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Swiss Open. Second-placed Syd Scott (Scot) finished 1 shot behind Rees (Wales). [GC Crans-sur-Sierre, Crans-Montana, Switzerland].

Category

Africa

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

3 & 2

Prize money

Title sponsor

Dunlop

Played as the Dunlop South African Match Play Masters. Rees (Wales) beat Ken Bousfield (Eng) 3 and 2 in the 36-hole final. [Durban CC, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

278

Prize money

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Swiss Open. Won by Dai Rees (Wales). [GC Crans-sur-Sierre, Crans-Montana, Switzerland].

1956
Europe
281
£375
Yorkshire Eve. News

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

281

Prize money

£375

Title sponsor

Yorkshire Eve. News

Played as the Yorkshire Evening News £1550 Tournament (June 20-22). Dai Rees (Wales) and Ken Bousfield (Eng) finished in a tie for first place. Eric Lester (Eng) finished 4 shots further back in third place. [Moortown GC, nr Leeds, W Yorks, England].

1955
Awards
71.85
British PGA

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Venue

Score

71.85

Prize money

Title sponsor

British PGA

Rees (Wales) won the Harry Vardon Trophy as the British PGA Tour 1955 Order of Merit winner. Award based on lowest scoring average in the season's top professional events. Rees's 71.85 was based on 35 rounds played.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

272

Prize money

£300

Title sponsor

Spalding

Played as the Spalding £1,350 Tournament (April 21-23; British PGA circuit season-opener). Second-placed Eric Brown (Scot) finished 2 shots behind Dai Rees (Wales). [High course, Moor Park GC, Rickmansworth, Herts].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

287

Prize money

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Belgian Open (July 16-18). Second-placed Norman Von Nida (Aus) and Aldo Casera (Italy) finished 1 shot behind Rees (Wales). [Royal Antwerp GC, Kappellen, nr Antwerp].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

280

Prize money

£400

Title sponsor

Daks

Played as the Daks Tournament. Second-placed Flory van Donck (Belg) and Tom Haliburton (Scot) finished 1 shot behind Rees (Wales). [West course, Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, Surrey].

1952
Europe
283
Yorkshire Eve. News

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

283

Prize money

Title sponsor

Yorkshire Eve. News

Played as the Yorkshire Evening News Tournament (June 18-20). Second-placed Henry Cotton (Eng) and Syd Scott (Eng) finished 1 shot behind Dai Rees (Wales), who claimed his third straight win in this event. [Moortown GC, nr Leeds, W Yorks, England].

1951
Europe
281
£225
Yorkshire Eve. News

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

281

Prize money

£225

Title sponsor

Yorkshire Eve. News

Played as the Yorkshire Evening News £1450 Tournament (June 6-8). Norman Von Nida (Aus) and defending champion Dai Rees (Wales) finished in a tie for first place. Ken Bousfield (Eng) finished 1 shot back in third place. [Moortown GC, nr Leeds, W Yorks, England].

1950
Europe
281
£300
Dunlop

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

281

Prize money

£300

Title sponsor

Dunlop

Played as the Dunlop Masters (Oct 10-12). Second-placed and defending champion Charlie Ward (Eng) finished 4 shots behind Rees (Wales). [Royal Liverpool GC, Hoylake, Wirral, Merseyside].

1950
Europe
276
£250
Yorkshire Eve. News

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

276

Prize money

£250

Title sponsor

Yorkshire Eve. News

Played as the Yorkshire Evening News £1350 Tournament (June 7-9). Second-placed Arthur Lees (Eng) finished 8 shots behind Dai Rees (Wales). [Sand Moor GC, Leeds, W Yorks, England].

1950
Europe
7 & 6
£750
News of the World

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

7 & 6

Prize money

£750

Title sponsor

News of the World

Played as the News of the World Match Play (Sept 20-23). Defending champion Rees (Wales) beat Frank Jowle (Eng) 7 and 6 in the 36-hole final, to record his fourth win in the British Match Play Championship. [Championship Course, Carnoustie Golf Links, Angus].

1949
Europe
1 hole
£750
News of the World

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

1 hole

Prize money

£750

Title sponsor

News of the World

Played as the News of the World Match Play (Sept 21-24). Rees (Wales) beat Henry Cotton (Eng) by 1 hole in the 36-hole final. [Old course, Walton Heath GC, Walton on the Hill, Surrey].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

295

Prize money

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Irish Open. Second-placed Norman Von Nida (Aus) finished 2 shots behind Rees (Wales). [Portmarnock GC, nr Dublin, Ireland].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

279

Prize money

£525

Title sponsor

Daily Mail

Played as the Daily Mail £2500 Tournament. Second-placed Norman Von Nida (Aus) finished 2 shots behind Rees (Wales). [Kilmarnock (Barassie) GC, Troon, Ayrshire].

1947
Europe
270
£120
Penfold

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

270

Prize money

£120

Title sponsor

Penfold

Played as the Penfold Tournament. The competiton ended in a three-way tie between Dai Rees (Wales), Reg Whitcombe (Eng) and Norman Von Nida (Aus), who were all declared winners. [Stoke Park CC, Stoke Poges, Bucks].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

300

Prize money

£315

Title sponsor

Spalding

Played as the inaugural Spalding £1,500 Tournament (June 5-7). Second-placed Reg Whitcombe (Eng) and Henry Cotton (Eng) finished 1 shot behind Dai Rees (Wales). [The Old Course, St Andrews, Fife].

1946
Europe
288
£350
Silvertown Co.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

288

Prize money

£350

Title sponsor

Silvertown Co.

Played as the Silver King Tournament (for the first time since 1939, due to WW2). Second-placed Allan Dailey (Scot), Reg Horne (Eng) and Charlie Ward (Eng) finished 7 shots behind Rees (Wales). [High course, Moor Park GC, Rickmansworth, Herts].

1939
Europe
Temple Newsam
37th hole
£150
Yorkshire Eve. News

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Venue

Temple Newsam

Score

37th hole

Prize money

£150

Title sponsor

Yorkshire Eve. News

Played as the Yorkshire Evening News £750 Tournament (June 8-10; played for the last time until 1945, due to WW2). Dai Rees (Wales) beat Jack Hargreaves (Eng) at the 37th hole in the final. [Temple Newsam GC, Leeds, West Yorkshire].

1938
Europe
4 & 3
£500
News of the World

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Score

4 & 3

Prize money

£500

Title sponsor

News of the World

Played as the News of the World Match Play (Sept 13-16). Rees (Wales) beat Eddie Whitcombe (Eng) 4 and 3 in the 36-hole final, to win this title for the second time in three years. Ernest Whitcombe (Eddie's father) was runner-up in this event in 1936, and the winner in 1924. Charles Whitcombe (Eddie's uncle) was the winner in 1928 and 1930. [Old course, Walton Heath GC, Walton on the Hill, Surrey].

1936
Europe
Oxhey Park
1 hole
£300
News of the World

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Rees, Dai

Venue

Oxhey Park

Score

1 hole

Prize money

£300

Title sponsor

News of the World

Played as the News of the World Match Play (Sept 15-18). Rees (Wales) beat Ernest Whitcombe (Eng) by 1 hole in the 36-hole final. [Oxhey Park GC, Watford, Herts. 18-hole course at the time; now 9-holes].

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