Oman women golfers to de­but at Arab meet

Muscat Daily - - SPORTS - Ashok Puro­hit

The re­cent ef­forts by the Oman Golf Com­mit­tee (OGC) to pro­mote golf among the Omani ju­niors and women has met with rea­son­able suc­cess with a new crop of ju­niors and women ready to com­pete at re­gional com­pe­ti­tions.

And in a first, the OGC will field a two-mem­ber women’s team at the forth­com­ing ninth Arab Women’s Golf Cham­pi­onship that will be held along with the 18th Arab Ju­nior Golf Cham­pi­onship at the El Kan­taoui golf course at Sousse in Tu­nisia from Novem­ber 16-18.

Ju­mana Ibrahim al Ghadaini and Asma al Rashdi will make their Arab de­but as the two women golfers were named by the OGC on Sun­day.

Oman will also be tak­ing part, as in the pre­vi­ous edi­tions, in the ju­nior cham­pi­onship with three U15 play­ers picked for the event.

The U15 team will com­prise Ay­man al Bu­saidi, Mo­hammed al Balushi and Mo­hammed al Naa­mani.

Asma had ear­lier com­peted in the GCC U15 Golf Cham­pi­onship in Manama, Bahrain, last year, when she along with Huwaida al Bar­wani, had also claimed a sil­ver medal in the three-team event.

Speak­ing to Mus­cat Daily,

Steven Troup, the na­tional team chief coach, said, “This is the first time that we have a women's team at an Arab event. Asma, who had played for Oman at ju­nior level, will be joined by Ju­mana Ibrahim, who has been play­ing golf for less than a year.

“To have a women's team at an Arab event is a pos­i­tive step for­ward for golf in Oman. The ma­jor­ity of the Arab coun­tries have fairly es­tab­lished na­tional women play­ers. So the ex­pec­ta­tion from our team would be to en­joy the ex­pe­ri­ence and learn from it.”

“Their par­tic­i­pa­tion will help us rope in more women play­ers in fu­ture to build a larger pool of golfers in fu­ture,” he added.

Asma is de­lighted to make her de­but in women's cat­e­gory and said, “I am hon­oured to rep- re­sent my coun­try and I will do my best. I hope to re­turn with a good re­sult.”

“The U15 team is well rep­re­sented by tal­ented reg­u­lars in Ay­man al Bu­saidi and Mo­hammed al Balushi. Both qual­i­fied to rep­re­sent Oman af­ter fin­ish­ing sec­ond and third re­spec­tively in the Golf Oman Or­der of Merit.

“The cur­rent Or­der of Merit leader is 14 year old Mo­hammed al Naa­mani, who will be mak­ing his Oman de­but.

“Mo­hammed has achieved his golf hand­i­cap this sum­mer. He has been work­ing un­der me for the past seven months and has man­aged to achieve a hand­i­cap of 20 and has climbed up the ju­nior rank­ings quickly,” said the team man­ager.

Troup said, “A team with the qual­ity and po­ten­tial that our play­ers pos­sess put us in a good po­si­tion whilst be­ing up against some es­tab­lished U15 teams in the Arab re­gion. We are hope­ful of a good re­sult.”

Ju­mana Ibrahim al Ghadaini

L-R: Steven Troup, Mohd al Naa­mani, Ay­man al Bu­saidi, Mohd al Balushi

Asma al Rashdi

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