Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - British pro Belt to train at AGR in Siem Reap

British pro Belt to train at AGR in Siem Reap

Briton Alex Belt is the most successful professional golfer to use a Cambodian course for training.
Briton Alex Belt is the most successful professional golfer to use a Cambodian course for training. Photo supplied

British pro Belt to train at AGR in Siem Reap

One of Britain’s leading golf professionals, Alex Belt, will arrive in Siem Reap during the second week of January for a three-month stint at the Angkor Golf Resort, primarily to use the facilities at the award-winning Nick Faldo-designed course as part of his winter training programme.

Apart from focusing on his training regimen, the 30-year-old PGA touring professional will also spend time with fellow Britons David Baron, AGR’s director of golf, and Alan Martin, head professional, in providing a number of services to the guests, as well as sharing his expertise and experience with local staff members and golfers.

“David Baron is a close friend of mine and I have followed his career closely, which brought my attention to the AGR,” Belt told the Post yesterday.

“The course and facilities are world-class; it is a privilege to have the opportunity to be associated with the resort.”

Belt began the year by winning twice in Spain on the Evolve Tour, recording a nine-under-par round to tie the course record at El Valle. He has had nine course records in his short career in golf, a sport he took up after dabbling in football. Incidentally, five of those records still stand to this day.

Starting out as a footballer with Hull City, Belt moved to York City. But when he could make no headway on the pitch, he turned to the fairways. And this remarkable switch has changed the course of his life.

In his own words, Belt recalled that transition. “Football just fizzled out and I had been playing at my local course. My handicap was low and the owner of the venue paid for my PGA training fees so I was able to start a career as a professional.”

Keen to make up lost time as a professional golfer, Belt enjoyed a phenomenal 12-month run in 2014, securing 26 professional tournament victories and claiming a win on the Euro Pro Tour along the way.

Alex’s order of merit position this year meant he qualified for the European Tours flagship event, the BMW Championship, where he played alongside Korean superstar and eventual winner Byeong An.

While fine-tuning his game and focusing on his physical conditioning, Belt will also set aside some time to work with Baron and Martin along with the rest of the AGR team.

“As we are into the high season, the course will be busy and Alex’s experience will be useful in a number of areas. He will be working alongside Martin, assisting to coach the team of 12 junior golfers recently selected from the Angkor Golf Junior Development programme,” Baron told the Post yesterday.

“Belt will also make himself available to provide tuition and ‘play with the pro’ experiences through the Angkor Golf Academy.

He will be able to provide our caddies with valuable insights and we look forward to involving him in the caddy training programme. In general, his presence can only enhance the services provided and the guest experience here at AGR," Baron said.

“This will be my first visit to Cambodia and I’m really excited to get started. I am very impressed with what they are doing for junior golf development and I’d be more than happy to help in any way,” Belt added.

MOST VIEWED

  • US think tank warns of China's 'ulterior motives'

    A US think tank on Tuesday warned that spreading Chinese investment in the Indo-Pacific follows a pattern of leveraging geopolitical influence at the expense of the nations receiving investment, including Cambodia. The report looks at a sample of 15 Chinese port development projects, noting that the

  • More than three tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia seized in Mozambique

    A total of 3.5 tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia was seized by authorities in Mozambique late last week, according to the NGO Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES' information was based on a report from the

  • Defence Ministry denies weapons in smuggling case came from Cambodia

    After a Thai national was arrested last week for allegedly smuggling guns from Cambodia to Thailand, Cambodia's Defence Ministry has claimed the weapons seized during the arrest are not used in Cambodia, despite the fact that both types of rifle seized are commonly found in

  • Shipwreck found off coast of Koh Kong

    Royal Cambodian Navy researchers are working to identify a decades-old shipwreck found earlier this month off the coast of Koh Kong province. Divers found the 70-metre-long wreck on April 4 about a mile from Koh Chhlam island, according to Navy officials. Deputy Navy Commander Tea Sokha,