The winner of this year's Asian Amateur Championship will feature in next year's Dubai Desert Classic at the Emirates Golf Club. The invitation to the leading Asian amateur tournament comes as part of Golf in Dubai's tradition of honouring amateur golf. The winner will join many of the world's leading golfers at the Majlis course when they compete in the US$2.5 million (Dh9.2m) event early next year.
The Asian Amateur, organised by the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation in conjunction with the Masters Tournament and the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, will be played at Kasumigaseki Country Club, Japan, in October. The winner will also receive an invitation to the US Masters and, along with the runner-up, entry to final qualifying for the British Open. "We look forward to welcoming the winner of the 2010 Asian Amateur Championship to Dubai and hope the experience of competing against a world-class field will hold him in good stead," said Mohamed Juma Buamaim, the vice-chairman and chief executive of Golf in Dubai.
"We have always taken pride in our tradition of providing the leading amateurs an opportunity to showcase their talent on the global stage," he said. "Players like Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy have competed in our tournaments as an amateur, and early this year we invited Matteo Manassero, the 16-year-old Italian. "The standard of golf in Asia has risen to such an extent that I believe it is just a matter of time before a real champion emerges. As more leading events come to the region, bringing stiffer competition, the knock-on effect has been a rapid improvement in the quality of players," he said.
Adel Zarouni, the secretary general of the Emirates Golf Federation, welcomed the initiative. * Agencies