World Amateur Team Championships set to unearth future Ryder and Solheim Cup stars

This month’s World Amateur Team Championships presented by Rolex are poised to introduce the future stars of the sport with over half of the celebrated participants from last month’s Solheim and Ryder Cup to have previously graced these prestigious amateur tournaments.

The Emirates Golf Federation, in collaboration with Abu Dhabi Sports Council and their Destination Partner, the Department of Culture and Tourism, will host the men’s Eisenhower Trophy from October 18-21, followed by the women’s Espirito Santo Trophy on October 25-28.

Seven players from the triumphant 2023 European Ryder Cup team have history of playing in the Eisenhower Trophy, including four-time Major winner Rory McIlroy, Masters champion Jon Rahm and current World No. 4 Viktor Hovland.

Luke Donald’s side also featured a former winner of the event with Nicolai Højgaard helping Denmark earn victory back in 2018 at Carton House Golf Club, Ireland.

“I have great memories of winning the Eisenhower Trophy back in 2018 alongside my brother Rasmus and John Axelsen,” said Højgaard.

“Participating in team events like the Eisenhower during the early stages of my amateur career really helped my game, and I found myself able to draw on those valuable experiences during the recent Ryder Cup.”

Zach Johnson’s American squad in Rome also boasted four former Eisenhower Trophy participants, among them multiple Major winners Justin Thomas and Collin Morikawa, alongside the reigning World Number One Scottie Scheffler.

From the women’s spectacle, 11 members of Suzann Pettersen’s side which retained the Solheim Cup in a thrilling 14-14 draw previously played in the Espirito Santo Trophy, with Sweden’s Maja Stark the only player not to do so.

The American team also featured five former Espirito Santo players, including this year’s Women’s British Open champion Lilia Vu.

In total, out of the 48 golfers who recently participated in golf’s most esteemed professional team events, 27 of them had previously competed in either the Eisenhower Trophy or the Espirito Santo Trophy during their careers.

Both of these amateur tournaments continue to play a pivotal role in the development of game’s greats, with the likes of Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus and Annika Sörenstam also previously teeing it up before going to cement their status as some of the all-time best.

This newest chapter from the recent Ryder and Solheim Cup stars underscores the storied history of these high-profile amateur events, which are set to make their inaugural appearance in the UAE in less than two weeks — an historic moment for the country’s golfing landscape.

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