Rising teen star Sophie Lamb will join world number eight In-Kyung Kim among other top draws ensuring that the forthcoming Omega Dubai Ladies Classic has the ‘major’ presence of both the winner and low amateur of the 2017 Women’s British Open at Emirates Golf Club from December 6 to 9.
One of the most exciting prospects to emerge from England, Lamb turned heads when she won the Smyth Salver for the leading amateur at this year’s Women’s British Open at Kingsbarns Golf Links in Fife, Scotland, in a defining high mark of her still young, but impressive career that took off with her winning the British women’s stroke-play championship and the England Golf Women’s Order of Merit title in 2016
The 19-year-old ace from East Lancashire will look to carry the winning momentum and good vibes from the major championship into Dubai, hoping to cap off a memorable season with another standout performance, one that gives wings to her career.
“I think winning the amateur medal in a major event was a huge moment for me. It is something everyone dreams of when they first start to play golf. It’s been a great experience for me to see where my game compares to the best in the world. It’s been good,” said Sophie ahead of the season-ending Ladies European Tour event, promoted and organised by Golf in Dubai.
“When you have confidence in yourself you feel like you can do just about anything, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself and will take things as they come. It will be fun playing in Dubai as I have heard a lot of good things about the tournament and know pretty well that it attracts a very strong field each year.
“I am grateful to Golf in Dubai for the invitation and look forward to visiting the magnificent city and playing on the famed Majlis course, Hopefully, there’ll be some more good times to come,” said Sophie, who has no immediate plans to turn professional.
“My immediate goal is the Curtis Cup. That’s something I want to achieve before I turn professional. Not sure how things will pan out, but definitely the Curtis Cup is something I want to do,” said Sophie, who was England’s top scorer in the mixed international against Spain for the Seve Ballesteros Trophy earlier this year, winning all her games.
A biennial competition between top female amateur golfers from the United States and Great Britain and Ireland, the 2018 Curtis Cup will be will be held at Quaker Ridge Golf Club in Scarsdale, New York, from June 8-10.
Commented Peter Dawson, chairman of Falcon Golf: “We are delighted to welcome Sophie to Dubai. She is one of the finest young talents to emerge in women’s golf and has already achieved great success during her amateur career.
“Her achievements since winning the North of England under-14 championships amply show she has enormous potential. This is just the beginning, and I am sure we will see more of her in time to come. I wish her the very best,” he added.
“It will be interesting to see how Sophie and In-Kyung fare during the tournament. Can they repeat their Women’s British Open heroics? The question has a fascinating appeal to it, one that will figure prominently in discussions as we approach the tournament.”
Pat Perez will join Rory McIlroy and defending champion Sergio Garcia in headlining a top-class field for the Omega Dubai Desert Classic which gets under way at Emirates Golf Club from January 25-28.
The 29th edition of the longest-running European Tour in the region will also see Henrik Stenson, Matt Fitzpatrick and Race to Dubai leader Tommy Fleetwood, among other European Tour top-draws, further bolster a sizzling star-cast at the famed Majlis course.
Riding high on confidence after picking up his third career PGA Tour victory at the CIMB Classic in Malaysia, the 41-year-old American will be hoping to keep the momentum rolling into Dubai.
Perez’s win, which earned him an automatic entry for next year’s Masters in April, took on a special significance at it came after a long recovery from a shoulder injury last year that threatened to wreck his career.
“It’s been an amazing 12 months. I can’t explain it, but I hope it continues,” said Perez, who also won the OHL Classic at Mayakoba on the PGA Tour in November last year.
“I have always wanted to play the Omega Dubai Desert Classic. It looks incredible and I have heard it’s run amazingly well.”
Returning to the site of his first professional win on the European Tour will be McIlroy, who will be aiming to match the feat of the great Ernie Els as the only three-time winner of the event.
McIlroy, who was forced to pull out of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic earlier this year due to injury, enjoys an incredible record at Emirates Golf Club, going 96-under-par for his last seven appearances which resulted in two firsts and five top-10s.
Arabian Golf TV's Claire tackled an important question during the Omega Dubai Desert Classic 2017: what are golfer's favourite emojis?
Answers varied from the monkey covering his eyes, to the waving emoji, to the classic smileys. There was one thing all the golfers could agree on - never use the golfer emoji!
Watch the video to find out which emoji was the most popular among the golfers.