Oman’s top amateur Azaan Al Rumhy and his National Team coach Steven Troup are excited to fulfil a dream and rub shoulders with the European Tour stars at Al Mouj Golf this weekend in the inaugural NBO Oman Open after both receiving invites.
Troup, who is a full-time teaching professional at Al Mouj Golf and also part of the Oman Golf Committee, was shocked when he discovered the news that he’s be participating in this event that’s set to be the biggest in Oman history and will help put the Sultanate on the world golf map.
“I’m excited to tee it up on this big stage but also a little apprehensive!” admits Scottish teaching-pro Troup, who’s lowest score is 67 on this Greg Norman-designed track. “A few guys were joking about me playing in this European Tour event for quite some time but I always played it down and laughed it off until I actually got officially invited three weeks ago – then I started practicing a lot harder!
This is the first time a European Tour event has been held in Oman after hosting Challenge Tour events since 2013 including the NBO Golf Classic Grand Final for the past three years. It’s a monumental achievement for everybody involved in the golf scene in Oman that have seen it grow from the bottom to the top echelons of the sport.
“Hosting a European Tour event here is absolutely massive – not just the golf club, but for Oman itself,” says Troup. “It will put this country on the world stage because I feel this is the biggest event to be hosted out here.”
Azaan, who was crowned Oman’s top player when he won the NBO Omani Amateur Final during last year’s NBO Golf Classic Grand Final, has dreamed about the opportunity to compete in his home country against past Ryder Cup legends, Major champions and leading players from around the world. This is set to be a proud moment in his own golfing career for him and his family who have seen a huge development in golf in this part of the world.
“I’ve always looked forward to playing in a European Tour event after going to Dubai many times over the years to watch the stars,” says Al Rumhy. “I’ve played on smaller Tour events like when the Challenge Tour was here in November but nothing as big as this. It’s a fantastic opportunity for me so I’m privileged and honoured to represent Oman amongst this strong field.”
There is some friendly competition going on between Azaan and his mentor Troup ahead of this spectacle that’s expected to have a global home television reach in excess of 400 million homes when it tees off from Thursday 15 February. Azaan is confident he will outperform his coach, but whatever the outcome, he’ll have the upmost respect for him and his coaching ability.
“Steven is a great man. I started working with him just over a year ago and I believe he’s the best coach we have in the country. He’s a good player especially at putting. My target is to beat him this weekend but regardless of the result, we will both have fun in this incredible opportunity.
— Matt Cooper (@MattCooperGolf) February 14, 2018
You can support the two Oman residents and the elite field of European Tour players this weekend – free of charge. Don’t worry if you’re not a golf fan, there’s plenty more to enjoy such as the hilarious shows performed by the Golf Trick Shot Boys, bouncy castles and other fun activities that would suit spectators of all ages at Al Mouj Golf from February 15-18.