Following an incredible career in amateur golf and his contribution as an administrator, New Zealand Golf and the golfers of New Zealand have finally acknowledged the achievements of Whanganui legend Bryan Silk.
Silk has been inducted into the Golf New Zealand Hall of Fame.
One of the best amateur players, who had a long-playing career at the highest amateur level, Silk first came to prominence in 1929 when, as a 19-year old, he played in his first New Zealand Open.
Silk's best result in the New Zealand Open was in 1948 when he came second, having been denied a playoff when Alex Murray made birdie on the 72nd hole. Silk also achieved 12 top seven finishes but although he played in the championship until the late 1960s, only missing one year, this was one tournament in his illustrious playing career that eluded him.
Silk's impressive results in the championship also included winning the Bledisloe Cup, presented to the leading amateur, on four occasions.
His amateur successes continued with his wins in the New Zealand Amateur Championship, New Zealand Open Foursomes Championship, New Zealand Foursomes Champion and North Island Championship.
With his win in the 1957 Caltex Pro-Am, he became only the second New Zealand amateur to win a professional event.
In 1945 Silk won the Inter-Allied Open tournament in Rome by a massive 20 strokes. Using borrowed clubs, he displayed his natural ability on the golf course. He was also a New Zealand representative eight times between 1932 and 1956.
The legendary Gene Sarazen was so impressed with Silk's game that he encouraged him to join him on the lucrative US PGA Tour but instead, the qualified accountant remained in New Zealand.
While in Britain, Silk investigated the merits of the newly-formed Golf Foundation for fostering golf through schools. He was favourably impressed and from 1955 to 1971 he was chairman of the New Zealand Golf Foundation.
Silk's administration contribution to golf at national level continued as a member of the New Zealand Golf Council from 1964 to 1976, being elected president in 1980 and the New Zealand team manager at the 1967 Commonwealth Tournament.
Silk is a golf and Whanganui legend who gave so much back to golf. He was renowned for his extreme concentration on the golf course, his knowledge of the sport, his impeccable dress, and his perfect manners. He died in 1995 and went into Whanganui Sports Hall of Fame in 2011.
BRYAN SILK — NATIONAL TOURNAMENT RESULTS
New Zealand Amateur Champion — 1934, 1937 and1947
New Zealand Open Leading Amateur — 1934, 1936, 1948 and 1963
New Zealand Open Foursomes Champion — 1950 and 1954
New Zealand Foursomes Champion — 1938, 1949, 1950 and 1954
North Island Champion — 1948, 1949, 1951, 1956 and 1958
New Zealand Open Championship Runner-Up — 1948, 12 top seven finishes
Caltex Pro-Am — 1957