x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Duel for trophy

Sixteen leading UAE professional golfers are relishing the chance to pit their wits against the best of the region's amateur players in the 10th running of the Dubai Golf Trophy on Saturday and Sunday.

DUBAI // Sixteen leading UAE professional golfers are relishing the chance to pit their wits against the best of the region's amateur players in the 10th running of the Dubai Golf Trophy on Saturday and Sunday. The popular competition follows a Ryder Cup format over the two days on the Faldo course at the Emirates Golf Club with points awarded for success in foursomes and fourballs before the concluding round of singles rubbers.

The professionals have had the edge in previous meetings, winning on seven of the nine occasions, but the amateurs came within a point of success 12 months ago and are confident of bridging that narrow gap this time. Some of the top teenage talent feature in the amateur line-up including Joel Neale, the new order of merit champion, Matthew Turner, who played in all four rounds of this year's Dubai Desert Classic and Khalid Yousuf, the leading Emirati player.

They are captained by Paul King, a member of Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club, who said: "It is an honour to captain such a strong group of players and I hope they are looking forward to the matches as much as I am. The opposing captain is Justin Parsons, a senior teaching professional from Butch Harmon's School of Golf, who said: "The Dubai Golf Trophy is a fabulous event that I know my team and I are looking forward to."

Rod Bogg, managing director of Dubai Golf, commented: "Naturally, there is a competitive spirit between the teams but the purpose of the trophy has always been to raise the profile of golf, to showcase its accessibility to everyone." @Email:wjohnson@thenational.ae