The approach to the 18th green at Abu Dhabi G.C., home of the European Tour’s Desert Swing opener each January for the past 13 years.
By Kent Gray
Last month, Golf Digest Middle East revealed that Saadiyat Beach Golf Club had secured World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) status for a new event designed to lure some of the world’s best young amateurs to the emirate.
The Abu Dhabi Amateur Championship will be played over 54-holes of strokeplay and given its revised December 13-15 timeslot, shapes as attractive to collegiate players heading home for Christmas while falling at a time where there is little top-flight golf available elsewhere.
Now Saadiyat has partnered with Abu Dhabi Golf Club to offer two further tournaments that will not only expose the Troon International managed sister properties to a wider amateur audience, but also the emirate’s tourism jewels.
The Abu Dhabi Golf Festival will be held at both Abu Dhabi and Saadiyat, as well as Yas Links, from December 1-8. It is spearheaded by leading German golf tour operator, Golf Extra, and is a popular week for European golfers searching for winter sun.
The Abu Dhabi Pro-Am, scheduled for February 2-7, follows on from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, the start of the new European Tour year. It’s a 54-hole tournament played over three days at both Abu Dhabi and Saadiyat and alredy boasts a $30,000 prize fund. Co-sanctioned by the PGA’s of Europe and the UAE PGA, it is open to teams of four, including one professional, and will be played in a better ball format.
“These events will not only help raise the profile of Abu Dhabi as a golf destination and a tourist attraction, but also provide a fantastic advert for what we have to offer here in Abu Dhabi,” said Ed Edwards, General Manager at Abu Dhabi and Saadiyat Beach.
“Golf in the region has been on an upward curve ever since the hosting of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship 13 years ago. These major golf events will complement the European Tour events and attract more visitors to this superb golf destination.
“We are extremely excited about the direction that golf in Abu Dhabi is heading.“