Shafiq Masih is hoping that lightning will strike twice as he looks to win the Dirab Golf Championship on the Mena Tour for a second successive year when the three-day event begins on Monday.
The Pakistani golfer prevailed 12 months ago at Dirab Golf and Country Club in Saudi Arabia and he hopes his experience will give him an edge in the fourth of 10 events this year on the Mena calendar.
“I am pretty familiar with the course, where I have been a teaching professional for many years,” he said.
“Local knowledge and memories of last year’s win makes me feel great coming back to Dirab Golf and Country Club. It will be a lot of fun if I can win here again. Anything can happen in golf, but my confidence is on a high.”
Masih does not go into the event in good form, having missed the cut at last week’s Dubai Creek Open, which was won by Zane Scotland for his second triumph in three events this year, leaving the Englishman on top of the Order of Merit.
Scotland has been paired with Pakistan’s Hamza Amin in Monday’s first round.
Prince Khalid bin Saud Al Faisal will lead the home contingent of six players in the 85-man field.
The Saudi royal will compete in the amateur division and Mena chiefs are thrilled to have him in the competition. “We feel proud and privileged to have prince Khalid in the field,” said Mohamed Juma Buamaim, the tour chairman.
“His gesture to sign up for the event is a great advertisement for the overall development of the game in the kingdom.”
The three-round competition comes to a conclusion on Wednesday.