(Abu Dhabi, UAE) – On February 2 – 3, 2018 the Emirates Golf Federation (EGF) hosted the 2018 UAE Presidents Cup at Yas Links Abu Dhabi. Sponsored by HSBC, the 6th edition of the UAE Presidents Cup broke records with 82 register players in the main event and 18 players for the Par 3 Championship. Winning the coveted trophy for his second time was Saif Thabet after firing a career and President Cup best.
Winning by an impressive eight strokes and rounds of 73 and a career-best 67 (5-under-par), no one was stopping Saif Thabet. Saif shot a UAE Presidents Cup record 140, 4-under-par, for the weekend. After battling windy conditions during round one you can tell that Saif was dialed in for the final round, which had perfect scoring conditions.
Saif Thabet had this to say about his 2018 UAE Presidents Cup victory. “To win this event twice under the patronage of His Highness Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan is a big honor. Having my name carved on the trophy and to go down in UAE golf history for firing the lowest score at this event means a lot to me. My hard work is paying off and by shooting my lowest round of my career is proof of that. I knew I was mentally and physically prepared. I think the turning point was when I got 3 birdies in a row during my second round on 11, 12, and 13″.
“Moving forward I am going to get back to the driving range and gym and continue to work on my game. I will better my game through the EGF Order of Merit in prep for National Team events. I also have my eye on making a spot on the amateur Dubai Trophy Team. I look forward to continuing to represent my country locally and internationally”, Saif added.
Taking the Runner-Up prize with rounds of 73 – 75 for an event total of 148 was Ahmed Skaik. Ahmed was in contention all weekend, but one unfortunate hole on the back nine of the final day, and the consistent play from Thabet proved to be the difference. Skaik will look to continue to play well for the remainder of the season.
Rounding out the Top-3 and coming in Third Place, was Hassan Al Musharrekh. With a strong first round of 73 (one-over-par) and an 80 for the final round for a total of 157, Hassan defiantly made his impression this weekend.
The event also presented players with the chance to win Net Prizes. The overall Net Winner for 2018 was Abdulla Al Musharrekh with a net total of 144. The Best Net for Day One award went to Abdul Rahman Al Laggiti with a round one 62 net score, and Best Net for Day Two went to Adel Zarouni with a 66 net score.
This year’s Ladies Champion was Reema Al Heloo. Reema has won this award for the second year in a row and will look to continue this trend for many years to come. Reema continues to get better each year as she fired an event total of 167 gross score for 23-over-par.
The Ladies Overall Net winner was Eida Al Muhairbi with a net score of 146 2-over-(net)-par.
The Junior Division saw a good battle. Walking away with the 2018 Junior Division title was Obaid Al Heloo. Obaid shot a championship total of 177 to claim his first ever UAE Presidents Cup victory.
Winning the Runner-Up prize in the Junior Division and just three shots back was Rashid Al Emadi. Taking home the Best Junior Net prize was Khaled Al Mutawa with a net score of 178.
In efforts to develop the game of golf within the national community, the 2018 UAE Presidents Cup sponsored by HSBC also hosted a Par 3 Championship on the Yas Links challenging Academy Course.
18 members of the EGF Foundation Squad, between the ages of 8 and 15, competed in a 9-hole championship. Coming out on top and crowned the 2018 UAE Presidents Cup sponsored by HSBC Par 3 Champion was Rashid Al Jassmy. His brother Sultan Al Jassmy was the Runner-Up and after a last three-hole count back Saad Al Zarouni won the Third Place prize.
“The addition of the Par 3 Championship is important to the EGF and the UAE Presidents Cup as this will showcase our rising stars. These kids will be the future National Team players and the future players that will keep the game of golf flourishing in the UAE”, said Khalid Mubarak Al Shamsi the Secretary General of the EGF.
Al Shamsi also added, “On behalf of the Emirates Golf Federation we would like to thank HSBC for their sponsorship and Yas Links for hosting our event”.
Sponsored by HSBC, HSBC is a globally recognized organization in banking with an event management sector that has a purpose to be where the growth is. With impressive golf events like the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and worldwide influence on junior golf programs, HSBC was an easy fit for the EGF and this event.
To close the event the award ceremony was graced with HH Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan from the Minister of Culture, Youth, and Social Development, along with other dignitaries from HSBC, UAE Olympic Committee and EGF Board of Directors.
To view all photos from this event find the Emirates Golf Federation on Facebook and Social Media. The EGF will be back in action at the next month at the National Monthly Medal on March 14, at Jebel Al Golf Resort and when the National Teams compete in the GCC Golf Championship in the upcoming months.