Saif Thabet reigns supreme at the UAE President's Cup

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Champion: Saif Thabet

Saif Thabet fired a career and tournament best to win UAE President’s Cup again at Yas Links Abu Dhabi.

Thabet triumphed by an impressive eight strokes with a round of 73 and career best 67 (5-under-par), scoring a competition record 140 at the weekend.

Following his heroic performance, he said the victory will give him a lot of confidence going into the rest of the season.

To win this event twice under the patronage of His Highness Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan is a big honour,” he said.

“Having my name carved on the trophy and to go down in UAE golf history for firing the lowest score at this event means a lot to me. My hard work is paying off and by shooting my lowest round of my career is proof of that. I knew I was mentally and physically prepared. I think the turning point was when I got three birdies in a row during my second round on 11, 12, and 13.”

He added: “Moving forward I am going to get back to the driving range and gym and continue to work on my game. I will better my game through the EGF Order of Merit in prep for National Team events. I also have my eye on making a spot on the amateur Dubai Trophy Team. I look forward to continue to represent my country locally and internationally.”

For Ahmed Skaik, he had to settle for second spot after his 148, while Hassan Al Musharrekh finished third place with a total of 157.

The event also presented players with the chance to win Net Prizes. The overall Net Winner was Abdulla Al Musharrekh with a net total of 144. The Best Net for Day One award went to Abdul Rahman Al Laggiti with a round one 62 net score, and Best Net for Day Two went to Adel Zarouni with a 66 net score.

In the ladies competition, Reema Al Heloo was crowned champion for the second year in a row after firing 167 gross score for 23-over-par.

The Ladies Overall Net winner was Eida Al Muhairbi with a net score of 146 2-over-(net)-par.

Walking away with the 2018 Junior Division title was Obaid Al Heloo, who shot 177 to claim his first ever UAE Presidents Cup victory.

He finished ahead of runner-up was Rashid Al Emadi who was three shots adrift, while the Best Junior Net prize went to Khaled Al Mutawa with a net score of 178.

In efforts to develop the game of golf within the national community the competition, sponsored by HSBC also hosted a Par 3 Championship on the Yas Links challenging Academy Course.

Eighteen members of the EGF Foundation Squad, between the ages of 8 and 15, competed in a 9-hole championship with Rashid Al Jassmy winning the event after edging his brother and runner-up Sultan Al Jassmy. Saad Al Zarouni won third place.

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Abu Dhabi-based 13-year-old tees off alongside his hero Rory McIlroy

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While all the talk after round one should have been about Rory McIlroy’s comeback and Tommy Fleetwood’s scintillating form, the name pursed on everybody’s lips was rising golf star Oscar Murphy.

The 13-year-old Irishman, who moved to the UAE capital three years ago, won a local tournament and as part of his prize, earned the opportunity to tee off alongside his idol McIlroy at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.

On Thursday, the Tyrone-born native joined the star-studded group of world No1 Dustin Johnson, Race to Dubai winner Tommy Fleetwood and McIlroy.

In front of a packed 15th hole at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Murphy struck a stunning tee-shot on the 177-yard par-3 – beating Fleetwood and Johnson.

“It was unbelievable,” Oscar said. “I got to walk up to the green with them and I was closer than Dustin Johnson and Tommy Fleetwood but Rory beat me to it.”

Speaking after his opening round 69, former World No1 McIlroy said he was surprised to see Oscar inside the ropes having previously met the youngster at the tournament in the capital.

He said: “He’s been following me since the 2011 PGA Championship in Atlanta and he’s at every round I play here, I feel like he’s my little mascot. He’s waiting at the back of every green and every tee box.

“Was a little surprised to see him on the tee there. I didn’t expect him to be inside the ropes today but he hit a really great shot, a really good little swing, one for the future.”

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Get into the swing of things with Abu Dhabi Golf Club's Christmas specials

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The club is offering some amazing Christmas deals.

Although Christmas Day is over for another year, you can still take advantage of some fantastic festive golf promotions at Abu Dhabi City Golf Club (ADCGC) this month. Their Christmas Crackers offers have been a big hit since it was launched and with it being available for purchase until the end of December, you can see for yourself why it’s highly rated.

For Dh599, you can receive two hours of coaching under qualified PGA professionals, saving you a 20 per cent discount, while if you want four hours of coaching (at a 33 per cent discount), that can be bought at Dh999.

With the promotions valid for three months from the date of purchase, David Taylor, head professional at ADCGC, says it’s a great way for golfers to enjoy the game at less cost. “Our Christmas Crackers promotions have always been a success here at Abu Dhabi City Golf Club as it offers all of our guests the chance to save money and give the gift of golf over the festive season,” he said.

“We see lots of our regular players inviting and introducing their friends, family and work colleagues to this great game, which can only be good for the game.

The Christmas promotions will be valid for three months.

The Christmas promotions will be valid for three months.

“This offer also allows golfers to make sure they play their best golf ever going into the new year. With the cooler season and the course in fantastic shape, there is no better time to start playing better golf.”

He added: “Our vision at Abu Dhabi City Golf Club is ‘We Grow Golf’ and this promotion is just another way to get more and more people playing golf.

“We hope to attract as many golfers down to our outstanding facilities as possible. We have lots of exciting plans in place for 2018 and firmly believe this will be the best year yet for golf in Abu Dhabi.

“We hope our Christmas Cracker promotion offers the opportunity for people to come down and give golf a try if they have never played before.

“Or for our regular golfer to get their game in the best possible shape for the New Year.

“Abu Dhabi City Golf Club caters for all levels of golfer and whether you’re looking to treat a loved one or maybe treat yourself, this promotion would be perfect for you.”

What: Abu Dhabi City Golf Club Christmas Cracker promotion

Where: Abu Dhabi City Golf Club

When: On-going. Promotions to be bought before December 31

Contact: For more information, visit www.adcitygolf.com or call +971 2 445 9600.

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