12 Sep 2022

Tom Phillips: Spectators craving that big event experience

There are fewer than 100 days to go until our 2022 season concludes at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, and the stage is set for another fascinating finale at Jumeirah Golf Estates later this year.

The top 50 players on the DP World Tour Rankings will head to the Earth course from November 17-20 for the 14th edition of the season-ending tournament, which will be our fifth and final Rolex Series event of 2022.

This year’s tournament, like many others on our schedule so far in 2022, will be the first since 2019 to be played without Covid-19 restrictions and that will only heighten the anticipation for what is always a highlight of the sporting calendar in Dubai.

As events around the world have returned to normal across the summer, it has been apparent how much spectators have been craving that big event experience. On the DP World Tour, we have seen a surge in demand to attend many of our tournaments, including this summer at the Horizon Irish Open, Genesis Scottish Open and BMW PGA Championship, the latter selling out on the weekend for the first time.

For a number of years now, our events have offered attending spectators much to enjoy outside the ropes as well as world class action on the course.

In addition to free general admission, our Championship Village at the DP World Tour Championship offers a range of attractions and food and beverage options. Last year we also introduced our first Ladies Day, which will return this year alongside a dedicated Family Day for the first time.

We also recently announced the DP World Tour’s new eTour competition will conclude with a live grand finale at the DP World FLOW Pavilion at Expo City Dubai on November 16, the Wednesday of the DP World Tour Championship week.

That will take place a year after the same Pavilion hosted our historic joint announcement with DP World, celebrating the evolution of our long-term partnership with DP World becoming the title sponsor of the European Tour group’s main Tour.

As we approach the final quarter of our first season as the DP World Tour, there has already been so much to look back upon, including the ground-breaking first co-sanctioned event with the PGA TOUR at Genesis Scottish Open, and the fact that 50 of our DP World Tour members also played in both the Barracuda Championship and Barbasol Championship on the PGA TOUR in July.

The global nature of our Tour has once again been underlined by the fact that we have already had winners from 17 different nationalities, including our first Polish winner, Adrian Meronk, who fittingly was one of four players to take part in the launch press conference for the DP World Tour at Expo last November, along with Englishman Tommy Fleetwood, Scotland’s Stephen Gallacher and South African Dean Burmester.

In June, we also had our first female winner on the DP World Tour, when Sweden’s Linn Grant triumphed in spectacular fashion on home soil at the Volvo Car Scandinavian Mixed.

Later that month, Englishman Matt Fitzpatrick claimed his maiden Major with victory in the US Open at Brookline, the course where he also won the US Amateur Championship, joining Jack Nicklaus as the only player to achieve this notable double. Matt previously won the DP World Tour Championship in 2016 and 2020, and he will be hoping to become the first three-time winner of the season-ending event this November. He will also be hoping to win the DP World Tour Rankings for the first time, having finished runner up in 2020 and in the top five in each of the last three seasons.

It has also been another impressive year for another two-time DP World Tour Championship winner, Rory McIlroy, who finished inside the top ten in each of the four Major Championships
in 2022 and currently leads the DP World Tour Rankings.

Belgium’s Thomas Pieters and Norway’s Viktor Hovland, the winners of our first two Rolex Series events of 2022 in Abu Dhabi and Dubai respectively, have retained their challenge at the top of the Rankings, while American Will Zalatoris, currently second in the Rankings, has also enjoyed an impressive campaign and we wish him well in his recovery from a back injury which recently ruled him out of the PGA TOUR’s season finale.

There is, of course, plenty still to play for between now and November17, including the next Rolex Series event, the BMW PGA Championship, which will mark the start of the European Ryder Cup Team Qualification campaign, as well as another look at Marco Simone, the 2023 Ryder Cup course, for the DS Automobiles Italian Open.

The DP World Tour will also visit Spain and Portugal for a four- week ‘Iberian Swing’ following the recent addition of the Mallorca Golf Open and the Portugal Masters to our schedule in October.

Prior to the DP World Tour Championship, we will then head to South Africa for the 40th anniversary of the Nedbank Golf Challenge, which itself returns to our schedule for the first time since 2019.

Big events are therefore very much back to be enjoyed, and this year’s DP World Tour Championship has the potential to be our biggest and best one yet.

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