Superfan reflects on 15 years of DP World Tour Championship in Dubai

Price, 46, has attended every edition of the tournament since 2009

By Team KT

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Andi Price (left) at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai. — Supplied photo
Andi Price (left) at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai. — Supplied photo

Published: Tue 21 Nov 2023, 10:39 PM

Among those watching as Denmark’s Nicolai Højgaard claimed victory at the 15th edition of the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, was golf fan Andi Price.

Some things never change.

Price, 46, has attended every edition of the tournament since 2009.

The school teacher didn't really know anything about the tournament when he attended the first event.

“I’m a teacher, and the principal at my school asked me to go to this golf event with him, where a number of the big players were competing. I didn’t really know anything about the tournament, but I went down on the Thursday and ended up spending a whole weekend there! From that moment on, I was hooked," he said.

“I’ve been every year since 2009. In that time, I’ve since had a daughter so it’s nice to bring her along with me now too. I absolutely love it; it's a great day out, it's free, and you get to see some of the best players in the world. It’s amazing to be so close, you feel like you can really interact with them which is brilliant, and it's great to see elite-level golf played at such close quarters.

Few are better placed than the English expat to assess the evolution of an event which has become one of the highlights of the UAE sporting calendar.

“Over the years, I think the course has become more and more picturesque,” he says. “I remember in 2009, most of the villas around the course were only half built and I don’t think the clubhouse was even open at that point.

“Now it’s completely different, you have all the entertainment in the Championship Village, and the food and beverage options are amazing. You can go and watch the players on the range, on the putting green, watch the trick shot shows, and all from front seat views. There really is so much to see and do to fill your day."

While Price has spent the majority of his time at Jumeirah Golf Estates watching the professionals showcase their talents, there have been occasions in which he has had the opportunity to test his own abilities on the Earth course – with mixed results.

“I’ve actually been lucky enough to play the Earth course a few times,” says Price. “I was a member at Jumeirah Golf Estates for a couple of years, and even won a qualifying tournament for the 2014 DP World Tour Championship Pro-Am.

“It’s a great story because the principal agreed to caddie for me, so we took the day off to play in the competition!"

The growth of the event over the course of the last 15 years has undoubtedly contributed to the increased popularity of golf across the UAE.

“I absolutely love golf and I’ve managed to pass it on to other teachers at my school, says Price.

“We play at Arabian Ranches and created our own league called ‘The Strugglers’. We have around 20 teams who play as different countries once a month and it’s great.

“I love seeing so many more people getting into golf nowadays in Dubai and the UAE, and I think anyone who plays is spoilt with the amazing courses on offer here.”


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