Alvaro Quiros will be aiming to become the first back-to-back winner of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic when the long-hitting Spaniard returns to defend his title in a star-studded field at the Emirates Golf Club from February 9 to 12.
Since the inception of the tournament in 1989, no player has won the title twice in a row though South Africa’s Ernie Els (1994, 2002 and 2005) and Tiger Woods (2006 and 2008) have inscribed their names on the glittering trophy more than once.
The 28-year-old Spaniard produced scintillating golf, upstaging Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and Woods, the then top-three ranked players in the world, to win the 2011 edition of the $2.5 million event, promoted and organised by golf in DUBAi, in style.
With luck smiling on him, the Spaniard eagled the second and aced the par-3, 11th en route to a closing 68 for his fifth win on the European Tour. Spurred on by the success, Quiros rounded off a great season, adding the Dubai World Championship to his rich cache of achievements which included the Alfred Dunhill Championship in 2006, the Portugal Masters in 2008, the Qatar Masters in 2009 and the Open of Spain in 2010.
“I am really proud of my record in the region and feel very much at home there,” said Quiros. “Obviously, the goal is win the Omega Dubai Desert Classic (again), but to win a tournament you need a bit of luck too. If things fall into place I am sure I can repeat the success,” said Quiros, ranked 22nd in the world.
“I love playing in Dubai because the weather helps a lot. Long hitters like me have an advantage there,” said Quiros who averages over 300 yards off the tee, 312.69 yards to be precise in 2011.
“I’m a normal guy. Winning one per year is great for me. My focus is to enjoy myself every day on the golf course. If I’m happy then I stay positive and even the bad days are a little better,” said Quiros who grew up in a small house near the Valderrama Golf Club, on Spain’s Costa del Sol.
Commented Mohamed Juma Buamaim, vice chairman and CEO of golf in DUBAi: “We look forward to welcoming our defending champion, who is one of the most exciting players on the Tour and the one who has been wowing crowds with his power and charm.
“With Fred (Couples) who also averages close to three hundred yards off the tee, in the field, it will be fun to watch the two great strikers of the ball. I wish Alavro the very best and hopes he has a wonderful stay in Dubai.”
‘golf in DUBAi’ is backed by Omega as the title sponsor and Dubal (Dubai Aluminium) as the sponsor. The co-sponsors are: CNN, Gulf News, Emirates NBD, Jumeirah, Mercedes-Benz and wasl while Dubai Duty Free, Carpetland and Motivate are the Patrons in golf in DUBAi’s drive to showcase the emirate’s vibrant golfing scene to a worldwide audience.
Alvaro Quiros, the 2011 Omega Dubai Desert Classic champion, with Shaikh Maktoum bin Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, and Mohamed Juma Buamaim, vice chairman and CEO of golf in DUBAi, at the presentation ceremony at the Emirates Golf Club