Golf makes its way among other sports in Arabia


Economic City (Arabia)

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Within the policy of using top-level sport to become known as an event organizer worldwide, Saudi Arabia He decided to bet on golf as one of his mainstays. As if the football options (Supercopa de España), Formula 1, Paris Dakar or Tour de Arabia were not little promotion, the Saudi International It is now in its fourth edition and is gaining high consideration outside and inside the country. This year his financial endowment has increased to 5 million dollars and more and more celebrities from other disciplines are approaching him. Among them the jockey David Egan, an accomplished golfer in his spare time at Ireland and a figure in the Arab sports world.

Equestrian culture has been part of its tradition since time immemorial and horse racing is followed with true passion. His win last year Saudi Cup, a $20 million event, “is like winning a golf major,” he said. Lee Westwood, owner of a horse stable in England and a complete connoisseur of this environment. “I have always loved this world and it is an honor to be with David in these important events, crucial in the Kingdom’s strategy in its Vision 2030 plan”, concludes the former world number one in golf.

This Saudi International has also attracted three players from the world top 10 this year (Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffelee y Bryson DeChambeau) and another good handful of high-level international golfers, including five Spaniards. All of them highlight the boom that this sport is acquiring in this peninsula, especially Pablo Larrazábal (-2 in the tournament). “What impresses me the most is that a girl approached me yesterday and told me that after seeing us in the first edition she got hooked on golf and that she is preparing to be the first professional in this country. I think that is the mission that we have to achieve for them through sport, both inside and outside their borders”, comments the Barcelonan, sponsored by Golf Saudi and a firm defender of his postulates.

Sergio Garcia (pair) He has also seen the evolution of the tournament in these editions and is aware of the evolution experienced. “Little by little, the field, the fans and the interest that the tournament is generating throughout the world are consolidating. I think they are going in the right direction,” says the man from Castellón. Of the same opinion, and delighted by the result obtained in the first round, it is Adri Arnaus (-6). Catalan comes to Royal Greens for the third consecutive time and could not be more satisfied. “The course is magnificent and they always treat us wonderfully; there is more and more public wanting to see golf and learn. It is a magnificent tournament that grows by leaps and bounds every year,” he commented after finishing second to two impacts of a Matteo Manassero (-8) that seeks to recall lost glories.

Both stood out in this first round above stars like Johnson (-5), Patrick Reed and Henrik Stenson (-4), Schauffele and Mickleson (-3) and DeChambesau (+3). The other two Spaniards present are Eduard Rousaud (-1) and Rafa Cabrera (par), in principle they are inside the cut.

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