As leading UAE National amateur Ahmad Skaik got the inaugural Golf in Dubai Championship presented by DP World underway earlier this morning by hitting the first tee shot, Emirates Golf Federation Vice Chairman Adel Zarouni was on hand to celebrate the occasion as they look ahead to hosting the prestigious 2023 World Amateur Team Championships (WATC) on the Fire course.
The EGF’s successful bid for the Fire course at Jumeirah Golf Estates to stage the biennial WATC, also known as the Eisenhower Trophy, was announced in October and Zarouni was delighted to see Skaik take the spotlight on the 1st tee on National Day.
“The timing couldn’t have been scripted any better, with Ahmad handed the honour on National Day to hit the first shot in this new Championship,” said Zarouni. “It also provided perfect symmetry as the Fire course formed part of our successful application to host the 2023 World Amateur Team Championship, and we can now begin the countdown to welcoming all of the delegates and athletes into the UAE.
“This event marks the first time the Fire course will stage a professional Tour event which is broadcast to a global audience and we hope all potential WATC contestants enjoy what they see this week and look forward to competing here in three years’ time.”
The EGF will bring the WATC to the Middle East for the first time in 2023 and fewer teams will also compete and on only one course. The Emirates Golf Federation presented the Greg Norman-designed Fire course at Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai as the host venue.
A reduced field of 36 teams was approved in the IGF’s 2018 meeting in a move made to lessen the cost and complexity of hosting the event.
The Eisenhower Trophy began in 1958 at St Andrews, Scotland, and has been the launching pad for many a successful career, with recently both Justin Thomas (2012) and Bryson DeChambeau (2014) playing their part in United States victories before going on to win Major titles as professionals.