World Golf­ing Stars Lead Cel­e­bra­tions as Royal Greens Golf and Coun­try Club En­joys Grand Open­ing

Golf Vacations - - Chip Shots -

World golf’s new­est cham­pi­onship venue, Royal Greens Golf and Coun­try Club, cel­e­brated its of­fi­cial Grand Open­ing over an ac­tion­packed week­end, as golf­ing stars, celebri­ties and se­nior mem­bers of the Saudi Government con­gre­gated to mark the his­toric oc­ca­sion.

Four-time Ma­jor win­ner and Pres­i­dent’s Cup Cap­tain, Ernie Els, was joined by Euro­pean Tour win­ner, An­drew ‘Beef’ Johnston, to wit­ness the first tee shot over the spec­tac­u­lar Euro­pean Golf De­sign, par72 lay­out, struck by His Ex­cel­lency Yasir Bin Oth­man Al-Ru­mayyan, Pres­i­dent of the Saudi Golf Fed­er­a­tion.

He was closely fol­lowed by Euro­pean Tour Chief Ex­ec­u­tive, Keith Pel­ley, Els and Johnston them­selves, and Ladies Euro­pean Tour play­ers Amy Boulden, Camilla Len­narth and Maha Had­dioui in tak­ing to the first tee for the very first time.

Dur­ing an ac­tion-packed week­end, the pro­fes­sion­als were joined by Oth­man Al­mulla, a prom­i­nent mem­ber of the Saudi Na­tional Team and Claude Har­mon III, one of the world’s lead­ing coaches. To­gether, the group de­liv­ered clin­ics for begin­ner golfers and were treated to a taste of both tra­di­tional and mod­ern Saudi cul­ture at a grand gala din­ner, where they were greeted by Saudi ardha dancers.

Af­ter the Grand Open­ing Ex­hi­bi­tion Match, in which Ernie Els and Had­dioui were nar­rowly de­feated by Al­mulla and Boulden in a fun three-hole scram­ble, the South African Hall-of-Famer, said: “The open­ing of Royal Greens Golf and Coun­try Club is a land­mark mo­ment for golf in Saudi Ara­bia. This golf course is spec­tac­u­lar and, with its set­ting upon a stretch of pris­tine Red Sea coast­line, I’m sure it will quickly be­come one of the most recog­nis­able and most pop­u­lar des­ti­na­tions on any world­wide tour.”

Royal Greens has been cho­sen by the Saudi Golf Fed­er­a­tion to host Saudi Ara­bia’s first ever Euro­pean Tour event, which will welcome the great and good of the game in Jan­uary 2019. The Fed­er­a­tion an­nounced the event at the Grand Open­ing and con­firmed the par­tic­i­pa­tion of top play­ers, in­clud­ing: World No.1, Dustin John­son; Mas­ters Cham­pion, Pa­trick Reed; Ry­der Cup Cap­tain, Thomas Bjorn; and World No.13, Paul Casey.

Home to a state-of-the-art Golf Academy and ex­ten­sive long and short-game prac­tice ar­eas, Royal Greens also ce­mented its sta­tus as a pil­lar of the sport’s de­vel­op­ment in the coun­try with the sign­ing of an MOU with the Saudi Ara­bian Golf Fed­er­a­tion. This agree­ment will see Royal Greens and mas­ter de­vel­oper Emaar the Eco­nomic City work with the Fed­er­a­tion to at­tract more novice play­ers to the game, sup­port the elite Na­tional Team via ac­cess to its out­stand­ing fa­cil­i­ties as Saudi’s flag­ship golf­ing desti­na­tion and con­sult on the de­vel­op­ment of new golf­ing fa­cil­i­ties in The King­dom.

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