x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Al Budoor wants to ride the winning boost from National Day golf title

The Al Khaleej school student has emerged as one of the success stories of the Emirates Golf Federation's programme.

DUBAI // Still taking his baby steps through the National Junior Programme, Ahmed Abdullah Al Budoor has set his sights on playing alongside the game's top names in the future.

Encouraged by a cousin, Al Budoor first set foot on a golf course just over a year ago and in this short period, he has emerged as one of the success stories of the Emirates Golf Federation's programme, which is aimed at attracting more Emiratis to the sport and honing their skills.

Al Budoor, 15, first gave a glimpse of his potential in April when he won the second round of the UAE Nationals Par-3 League at the Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club on a count back from Obaid Mubarak.

He has shown vast improvement since, winning the opening two rounds of the League's Division A (Under 16) this season by comfortable margins.

In the opening round in September, Al Budoor carded an impressive 32 to bag the honours and earlier this month, playing a consistent tee-to-green golf at the Emirates Club, he shot a gross 35 to finish three strokes ahead of Abdulla Al Qubaisi.

Al Budoor then celebrated National Day by winning the UAE National Day Junior Golf Championship alongside Till Schwarte at the par-3 course of Yas Links Abu Dhabi.

"Winning is always a big boost," said Al Budoor, a Grade 9 student at Al Khaleej school. "It motivates you to work harder and I have been fortunate with that.

"I have to continue this progress and play on the international stage one day, alongside the top names of the game."

Al Budoor and Schwarte carded a gross 30 at the National Day championship, finishing five shots ahead of Abdulla Al Qubaisi and Victor Prudomme.

The team of Hammad Al Qubaisi and Emilie Schwarte finished third on a gross 37.

The tournament had attracted 44 players with each team consisting of a UAE national and an expatriate, and the better-ball gross format was employed.

Saeed Albudoor, the general manager of the Emirates Golf Federation, was happy with the turnout and has promised more exciting tournaments in the future.

"We are planning more such events for juniors this season to keep the momentum going," he said.