Ryder Cup Vice Captain Thomas Bjorn celebrated a fantastic win at the stunning Saadiyat Beach Golf Club for the Saadiyat Beach Classic charity Pro-Am tournament. The event now in its second year attracts an unprecedented field of stars from the world of golf and sport at the Middle East’s first beach front golf course.
Bjorn’s team secured victory in the event around the par 72 championship course, designed by Gary Player. The Dane saw off challenges from the likes of Ian Poulter, Paul Casey, Matteo Manassero and Henrik Stenson to claim the title previously held by world number 7 Rory McIlroy.
‘“What a special event and what a special day – this really brings out the best in golf and people. The combination of a stunning golf course in perfect condition, beautiful weather and three very worthy causes at the heart of the event, certainly help us raise our games to the challenge. Hopefully we can come back next year as a team and defend our title and raise more money for charity!’ commented Thomas Bjorn, the former Ryder Cup star.
Hosted by Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), the master developer of tourism, cultural, and residential destinations in Abu Dhabi, and Gary Player, the tournament saw eighteen teams led by a number of the world’s most recognizable golfing and sporting celebrities enjoy a Pro-Am tournament to raise money and awareness for local and international children’s charities.
Mubarak Al Muhairi, Managing Director, TDIC, commented: “It is a joy to see some of the world’s best players fight it out alongside local players at the Saadiyat Beach Classic, now a prestigious occasion in Abu Dhabi’s sporting and social calendar. This year’s event follows on the fantastic success of last year and so we look forward to raising even more funds for this year’s selected charities: Emirates Autism Centre and Ability Center for Special Needs, as well as The Player Foundation.”
The key aim of the tournament is to make a real difference to the lives of many children, whilst at the same time offering golfers and spectators the unique opportunity to rub shoulders with icons of sport and entertainment.
Following the day of golfing action, all players enjoyed a charity gala dinner at the stunning Emirates Palace entertained by a range of local and international entertainment, plus live and silent auctions to raise much needed funds to ensure that children in Abu Dhabi benefit directly.
A delighted Gary Player said: “It’s an absolute joy to be back in Abu Dhabi for an event and golf course that is so close to my heart. Without a doubt the true spirit of golf and those values of sporting friendship which make golf such a special game are on show today as familiar faces from around the world enjoy yet another memorable occasion. Regardless of the scores on such a picture perfect golfing day, we are all reminded that we are the fortunate ones in life. The real winners are the worthy causes and the children who will benefit from the funds raised.”
Some of the luxury items being auctioned include a Saadiyat Beach Golf Club Annual Passport for 2011, three specially commissioned art pieces including a piece by Rokni Haerizadeh, a couture dress made to measure by esteemed designer, Rami Al Ali, a Tiger Woods autographed personal Nike driver, a Phillippe Tournaire ‘Palace’ ring with diamonds, as well as a unique South African experience by the Gary Player Group.
Managed by Troon Golf, the world’s largest golf management company, Saadiyat Beach Golf Club was developed by TDIC and is the flagship sports facility on Saadiyat Beach, a destination that is set to become a magnet for high-end visitors and residents due to its host of exclusive and stylish 5-star resorts.
Tourism Development & Investment Company www.tdic.ae
Saadiyat Beach www.sbgolfclub.ae
World stars gather at the Saadiyat Beach Classic hosted by Gary Player, including European Tour ‘Rookie of the Year’ Matteo Manassero