Sean McNamara closed with a 73 to finish in a tie for 61st place on one under, the best score by a MENA Golf Tour professional competing in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic which concluded at the Emirates Golf Club on Sunday.
The American, who earned entry to his first European Tour event after finishing third on the inaugural MENA Golf Tour, carded rounds of 72, 71, 71 and 73, finishing well ahead of some seasoned names in the field, including Colin Montgomerie, Todd Hamilton and Miguel Angel Jimenez.
“Having experienced what it takes to compete at this level, I can say with a sense of pride that I have the game to match regular pros on the tour. The whole week was just amazing,” said McNamara. “Now I know I can play at this level, which is a huge positive,” said McNamara who earned euro 4,733 (Dh22,950) for his efforts.
“It’s just small errors here and there in my game that I need to sort out. In nutshell, I am returning home richer in experience and high on confidence,” he said.
McNamara was among the top three MENA Golf Tour players — Jake Shepherd and Peter Richardson being the two others — who made it to their first ever European Tour event after securing the top three positions on the Order of Merit standings.
“The fact that we all made the cut which in itself was a major endorsement for the tour,” he added.
The English duo – Shepherd and Richardson – faltered on the final day with rounds of 75 and 81 respectively. “I didn’t finish the way I would have like to, but can’t complain too much,” said Shepherd who turned only last year.
“Overall, it was a great experience. I had great expectations of me after making the cut, but finished quite disappointingly which is not good,” said Shepherd who finished in a tie for the 74th place, earning euro 2,825 (Dh13,700) each their week’s work.
Image: Sean McNamara
“I need to iron out a few things if I am to match the best in the business. My fundamentals are pretty okay, it’s just that one per cent here and there which is making all the difference.”
His fellow Englishman Richardson, who shot sub-par scores in the first three rounds, stuttered and stumbled to a disappointing 81, eventually finishing tied 74th along with Shepherd.
“Things just didn’t fall into place today. There was no rhythm in the game. I don’t know why. Still, I can take a lot of positives from the tournament and would like to thank the MENA Golf Tour officials for creating this opportunity for all of us.
“I look forward to coming to back and hope the second edition of the tour would be even better. I wish them the very best.