Recent Bio

Daniel Neil Hillier.  DOB: 26th July 1998

Daniel was born in Porirua, just north of Wellington, the capital of New Zealand. As a youngster he always had a golf club in his hand although he played other sports up until the age of 13 years old. Daniels first club membership was at Judgeford Golf club, moving on to Manor Park Golf Sanctuary where he played senior mens interclub. As his golfing journey progressed he joined Royal Wellington golf club in Heretaunga.

As an Amateur golfer, Daniel amassed a number of key titles including two New Zealand Junior U19 Championships in 2015 and 2016, the 2017 Australian Junior Championship, a Charles Tour professional event in the 2015 Harewood Open, as well as two New Zealand Amateur Championships in 2015 and 2017.

In 2018 during his second overseas tournament campaign in the USA, Daniel was co-medalist at the US Amateur Championship held at Pebble Beach Golf Club. There were initially 7463 entries in the US Amateur qualifying events, and of the 312 players that qualified to compete at Pebble Beach, 39 were ranked in the top 50 Amateurs in the World.

Daniel made his debut in the senior NZ Men’s Representative team at the age of 18, when he competed at the 2016 Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship Cup in South Korea. He finished 15th in the individual standings at this tournament. He was 6th in the same tournament when it was held the following year in New Zealand in October 2017.

In September 2018, Daniel represented New Zealand as part of the three man Eisenhower team in Dublin. Team New Zealand finished in 4th place in the Teams event, while Daniel was tied 3rd overall in the individual standings.

Later at the 2018 Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship Cup in Singapore, Daniel finished a creditable 13th place in a strong international field in very difficult climatic conditions.

In June 2019 while still an Amateur golfer, Danial had the chance to play alongside the world’s best Professional’s at the 2019 US Open at Pebble Beach. Daniel played his way into the tournament by qualifying through the US Open sectional qualifying tournament at Walton Heath Golf Club in London. Daniel scored a 2 under par first round during the qualifier and followed this up with a sensational 6 under par second round to be the top amateur and one of seven players to qualify to play at the US Open.

Daniel reached 13th in the official World Amateur Golf Rankings (WAGR) before turning professional on 10th September 2019. He is represented by Sportfive, a global sports agency, and personally managed by Duncan Reid and Nick Winder who are based in London.

After turning professional, he won several domestic events on the Charles Tour, as well as the 2020 NZ Order of Merit.

In June 2021, Daniel played his way into his second Major (The British Open) via the final qualifier at Hollinwell (home of Notts) in the UK. This was the 149th edition of the British Open, golf’s oldest major tournament, and the 11th time it was played at Royal St. George’s.

Daniel had a remarkable season on the 2021 Challenge Tour. He began the year with only seven invitations, coupled with the additional difficulty of not being able to return home due to Covid-19 restrictions. Despite these difficulties, he secured his maiden Challenge Tour win at the penultimate event of the season, the Challenge Costa Brava, to play his way into the 2021 season finalé ‘Challenge Tour Grand Final’ in Mallorca.

He ended the season 23rd on the rankings to comfortably secure his full Challenge Tour card for the 2022 season, and have Category 18 status on the 2022 DP World Tour.

With his full Challenge Tour card secure, Daniel played the 2022 season with a goal of finishing the year in the Top 20 on the Order of Merit, which would secure him full playing rights on the 2023 DP World Tour.

Daniel won his second Challenge Tour tournament at the Swiss Challenge event in September 2022, to go alongside five other Top 10 finishes during the year.

During the 2022 Challenge Tour season Daniel played in 20 regular Challenge Tour events and 4 DP World Tour events, which culminated in him qualifying for the 2022 season finalé ‘Challenge Tour Grand Final’ in Mallorca.

He ended the 2022 season in 7th place on the Challenge Tour Order of Merit, which secured him Category 14 status on the 2023 DP World Tour.

As a professional, Daniel is now listed on the OWGR (The Official World Golf Rankings). This official ranking is updated weekly every Tuesday. For Daniel’s current placing you can check his profile here.

Background

When I was a toddler I had a plastic club and would constantly be hitting balls around the house, so Dad got me a small golf club and I used to go to his cricket matches and spend the day chipping the ball around the boundary flags of his cricket field. He took me to Pauatahanui Golf Course a few days before my 5thBirthday and I played 5 holes, and have been playing ever since.

I think it’s the heat of the competition and the fact the mental fortitude you need to compete in pressure situations. You can’t rely on someone else to step up when you want to hide away in the corner which I think adds to the excitement. Playing golf in New Zealand is also great, I’m always competing against and travelling with the same bunch of guys so I’ve been able to develop some really strong relationships because of that.

I’d say my driving and my wedge game are my strongest suits.

The most difficult thing about golf would probably be the fact that a competitive round takes 4-5 hours and you’re spending less than a quarter of that time actually hitting a golf ball, so there is a lot of time to think and sometimes those thoughts can have a negative impact on your game. It can be very mentally taxing trying to fight those thoughts that you don’t want in your head, so you need to learn to quiet your mind and focus only on what you can control when things get heated.

“When I was a toddler I had a plastic club and would constantly be hitting balls around the house, so Dad got me a small golf club and I used to go to his cricket matches and spend the day chipping the ball around the boundary flags of his cricket field. He took me to Pauatahanui Golf Course a few days before my 5th Birthday and I played 5 holes, and have been playing ever since.”

– Dan Hillier

“The most difficult thing about golf would probably be the fact that a competitive round takes 4-5 hours and you’re spending less than a quarter of that time actually hitting a golf ball, so there is a lot of time to think and sometimes those thoughts can have a negative impact on your game. It can be very mentally taxing trying to fight those thoughts that you don’t want in your head, so you need to learn to quiet your mind and focus only on what you can control when things get heated.”

– Dan Hillier

Past Video

Watch for an interview with Daniel Hillier and his girlfriend, Siobhan Weaver as they wander the streets of Spain during a week off from the Challenge Tour.

Full Results

Click here to download Golf Tournament Results from January 2012 to 30th November 2023

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