Thomas continues to prove his class at Dubai Desert Classic

Rayhan Thomas’ remarkable rise in golf hit a new high Saturday when he became only the second UAE-based amateur to make the cut in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

Joy Chakravarty
by Joy Chakravarty
4th February 2017

article:4th February 2017

The 17-year-old Dubai-based schoolboy followed up his brilliant 68 on the opening day with a three-over par 75, marred by a double bogey on the 18th hole. Despite that, the MENA Tour Amateur Order of Merit champion safely proceeded into the weekend rounds at one-under par 143, with the cut applied at one-over par 145.

The only other UAE-based amateur to have made it this far in the tournament is Matthew Turner, who finished tied 51st in the 2009 edition, which was won by Rory McIlroy.

Thomas then made a brilliant start to his third round, making four birdies in his first five holes, but a double bogey on the second hole, and a triple on the seventh saw him finish his third round on two-over par 74. He goes into the final round today at 217, tied for the 54th place.

“It was awesome to make the cut, but I wasn’t really thinking about it. I kept thinking that I had two more rounds to play so that was what my mind was on. But pretty happy to make it to the weekend,” said the 112th ranked amateur in the world.

“I really can’t complain about the start. I was four-under through nine, but unfortunately fell away on the back. I think I just got a bit tired, head popped up, made a couple of bad swings and that cost me.

“I think I was tired physically and mentally. It is hard to focus for so many holes,” added Thomas, who played 32 holes yesterday, including the 14 from his second round.

“But overall, I am pretty happy with it. Played well the back nine so some positives to take away from today into tomorrow. I just need to keep playing attacking golf and I’ll be fine.”

When asked what would be his aim in the final round tomorrow, Thomas said: “To shoot something that helps me finish in the red. If I can get myself back into red figures I’ll be happy.”



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