A rare spectacle of golf awaits fans when the ‘Champions Challenge’ is played at Emirates Golf Club as part of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic 25th anniversary celebrations early next year.
Featuring past champions of the longest-running European Tour event in Asia and the MENA region, the 18-hole stroke-play showpiece will see the exclusive field contest a $USD600,000 prize fund over the Majlis Course at Emirates Golf Club on Tuesday, January 28, while reliving their nostalgic moments.
Since the inception of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in 1989, the tournament has seen 21 winners from 12 different countries. The illustrious roll of honour also includes seven Major Champions, who between them have won 30 Major Championships. They are: Seve Ballesteros (1992), Ernie Els (1994, 2002, 2005), Fred Couples (1995), José Maria Olazábal (1998), Mark O’Meara (2004), Tiger Woods (2006, 2008) and Rory McIlroy (2009).
Whatevcr the outcome may be, the presence of past winners in the Champions Challenge and Omega Dubai Desert Classic will ensure an electric atmosphere, providing fans with an extra chance to see their favourite players during the most important week of the tournament’s history.
“We have invited all former champions to join the 25th anniversary celebrations. This is our chance to acknowledge their contribution to the successful staging of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic over the years,” said Mohamed Juma Buamaim, vice chairman and CEO of golf in DUBAi.
“Each anniversary is a milestone but reaching the 25th year is special for any organisation. Naturally, we feel a sense of accomplishment.
“I would like to thank all our past champions who have committed to the 2014 event and hope they enjoy returning to Dubai, particularly the champions from the early years who may not have played in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic over the last few years” he added.
‘golf in DUBAi’ is backed by Omega as the title sponsor and Dubal (Dubai Aluminium) as the sponsor. The co-sponsors are: CNN, Drydocks World & Maritime World, Emirates NBD, Gulf News, Jumeirah, Mercedes-Benz and wasl while Dubai Duty Free, Carpetland and Motivate are patrons.
HH Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum presenting the champion’s trophy to Denmark’s Thomas Bjorn, the winner of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in 2001, in this file photo