By Kent Gray
Paul McGinley has ended a two-decade hole-in-one drought in Dubai to continue a freaky family trend of aces in the emirate.
The 2014 Ryder Cup winning captain one-hopped a 9-iron into the cup on Trump International Golf Club, Dubai’s picturesque 17th hole during a corporate day for Emirates NBD on Sunday. Coincidently, it was a “Beat the Pro” hole which we guess the 50-year-old Irishman technically did.
“Today’s shot was 155 yards. The pin was on the left and the wind was helping from the right. I hit a draw with the wind with a 9 iron. It took one bounce and went in,” McGinley said.
Don’t feel too bad for McGinley whose last ace reportedly came during the 1996 the Cannes Open. Sunday’s perfect shot was the 14th ace of a career that includes nine pro victories – four on the European Tour – and that famous 10-foot putt to claim a half against Jim Furyk and clinch the 2002 Ryder Cup for Europe.
“If you believe in 13 being an unlucky number then it took me 20 years to move from 13 to 14. My first one was in 1984 and between 1984 and 1997, I had 13. “
The par 3 accuracy clearly runs in the family. McGinley’s brother Michael, a Dubai resident and +1 handicapper, incredibly had three in six days in 2015, one at Jumeirah Golf Estates (four iron on the 4th) and two at his then home Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club (with nine irons on the 5th and 8th in consecutive days).
The odds for such an achievement are said to be 75,000,000/1.