The Gulf Club

Dubai amateur Rayhan Thomas, just 19, wins second pro title by five shots in Bahrain

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By Kent Gray
Dubai golf prodigy Rayhan Thomas has sensationally won his second professional title as an amateur, turning the tables on South African rival Mathiam Keyser at the 11th King Hamad Trophy in Bahrain.

The Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club-attached Indian, who turned 19 earlier this week, fired a closing four-under 68 at the Royal Golf Club on Saturday to finish the 54-hole event on -17, five shots clear of Keyser.

After rounds of 66 and 65, Thomas came from a shot back overnight with the help of an eagle on the par-5 9th as 36-hole leader Keyser stumbled home with a 74. Englishman Josh White finished third, a further shot adrift on -11.

The victory enabled Thomas to extract a measure of revenge over Keyser who edged him by two shots in his defence of the 2017 Dubai Creek Open, the MENA Tour title he famously captured in September 2016 aged just 16.

Thomas, who is coached by U.S.-bound Dubai coach to the stars Justin Parsons, mightn’t have defended at the Creek but he did create global headlines by rattling off a world record equalling nine successive birdies in an opening round of 61, a course record tying round on his home course.

Related: Watch Rayhan Thomas seal world record equalling MENA Tour round at 2017 Dubai Creek Open

Thomas, who finished runner-up at the Asia Pacific Amateur Championship in Singapore last month, will follow in the footsteps of PGA Tour star Rickie Fowler when he plays collegiate golf for the Oklahoma State University Cowboys next year.

Related: Thomas eyes the 148th Open Championship at Royal Portrush after sensational run to joint second at Asia-Pacific Amateur


Kent Gray

Editor of Golf Digest Middle East. Has written about golf since 1989 and owned a suspect short game even longer.

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