Satoshi Kodaira: A new Japanese samurai in PGA Tour
- Vietnam! Inside the world’s next great golf destination
- VGA Union Cup kicks off amateur golf championship in 2019
- Vietnam's 13-year-old boy listed in World Amateur Golf Ranking
- ‘Vietnam Golf Coast’ Forms to Create Unique Golf Destination
The 28-year-old won the RBC Heritage and is now inside the world's top 30 - but who is Satoshi Kodaira?
Who Is Satoshi Kodaira?
Satoshi Kodaira became the fifth golfer to win on the PGA Tour with victory at the RBC Heritage.
The 28-year-old holed a 25 footer on the 3rd playoff hole to beat Si Woo Kim at Harbour Town.
After victory, he said his dream was to become a PGA Tour player.
“This is a stage I’ve been dreaming about.
“And having this opportunity to play [the PGA Tour] full-time is a dream come true.”
He wasn’t even a PGA Tour member before his win and will now play full-time in the USA.
Playing in the 145th Open Championship at Royal Troon. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Kodaira was born in Tokyo and turned professional in 2010. He first reached the world’s top 100 in December 2016 and is now inside the world’s top 30.
His dream fourball would be with Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus and Sam Snead.
He won his first professional title in 2012 at the PGA JGTO challenge Cup II in Boso.
His second victory was a big one, coming at the Japan Golf Tour Championship in 2013 where he beat Kiradech Aphibarnrat by a stroke. That tournament is one of the Japan Golf Tour’s ‘majors’.
He won another Japan Golf Tour major in 2015 at the Japan Open.
In total, he has won six times on the Japan Golf Tour, with his last title over there coming in November 2017.
He has won over £3 million on the Japan Golf Tour in his career – he picked up around £840,000 for his victory at the RBC Heritage.
Kodaira has been playing most of his golf in Japan and Asia for the last few years although he has played in five majors and five WGC’s since 2013.
He played in The Masters in the week prior to his RBC Heritage win and finished T28th. He played with Fred Couples in the third round and Vijay Singh in rounds one and two.
He has made the cut in three of his five major appearances, with his 2018 Masters finish being his best result.
Over the past decade, in the distant wake of golf’s arrival in Japan and its more recent wildfire spread in Korea and China, a burgeoning monied class has given rise to a swelling population of Vietnamese golfers and triggered a starburst of course construction
The 4th VGA Union Cup is scheduled to take place at the Skylake Golf Resort in Hanoi’s suburb district of Chuong My from March 22-24.
13-year-old golfer Dang Quang Anh has entered the list of the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR). Anh got the ranking after becoming the youngest winner of the event for amateur male golfers at Vietnam MatchPlay Championship which, together with the VPG Tour MatchPlay Championship, was held at Long Thanh Golf Course in late December 2018.