MENA Golf Tour ties up with Sunshine Tour

MENA Golf Tour ties up with Sunshine Tour

Dubai - Also, three MGT tournaments - all to be played in Johannesburg in June -will be co-sanctioned by the Sunshine Tour.

By KT report

Published: Sun 7 Feb 2016, 6:32 PM

Last updated: Sun 7 Feb 2016, 8:40 PM

 Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Golf Tour Patron Darren Clarke on Sunday announced the 2016 season schedule that expands its footprint in nine countries across three continents highlighted by a ground-breaking tie-up with the Sunshine Tour.
Starting with the inaugural Qualifying School at Almenara Golf Club in the Spanish resort Sotogrande in the Cadiz province from February 13 to 16, the tour features a total of 21 tournaments, making maiden voyages to Spain, South Africa, Egypt and Kuwait.
The introduction of the Q-School, conforming to the guidelines set forth by the game's apex body, will pave the way for the MENA Golf Tour to become eligible for Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) status, hopefully in a month or two.
Underlining the growing strength of the tour in the region and beyond, the MENA Golf Tour  (MGT) has entered into a new partnership with the Sunshine Tour which will see its five top professionals on the Order of Merit earn full playing privileges on the South Africa-based tour.
MGT players, ranked between six and 15, will be exempt into the final stage of the Sunshine Tour's Qualifying School in a move aimed at creating meaningful playing opportunities for players knocking on the doors of stardom.
Also, three MGT tournaments - all to be played in Johannesburg in June -will be co-sanctioned by the Sunshine Tour. The field for each event will consist of 60 MGT players and 60 from the Sunshine and the Big Easy Tours.
According to the terms of the agreement, the MENA Golf Tour will receive 20 invitations for each event on the Big Easy Tour event. In turn, the MENA Golf Tour will reserve 10 spots for each of its event for the Sunshine Tour and Big Easy Tour players.
 "We are delighted to forge this new mutually-beneficial partnership with the Sunshine Tour which marks a new dawn for players on the MENA Golf Tour," said Clarke, who is also the European Ryder Cup captain.
 "A lot of fresh talent coming up through the ranks over the last few years, but the opportunities to play are limited. This exchange programme with the South African tour will provide another platform for young professionals to develop and showcase their skills on a global basis."
Mohamed Juma Buamaim, chairman of the MENA Golf Tour, said: "We are delighted to announce a very strong schedule, which is almost double in size in comparison to last year when we had 11 events.
 "The perceptible rise in number of events is an apt reflection of the healthy growth of the tour over years and we look forward to strengthening our bonds with new countries, especially with the Sunshine Tour, who have come forward and supported the tour. I am confident that we are headed for truly exciting times ahead. The journey that began in 2011 has picked up the momentum."
Grant Wilson, COO of the Sunshine Tour, said: "We are very excited with the new partnership with the MENA Golf Tour which will further stimulate the growth of golf."
An initiative of the Shaikh Maktoum Golf Foundation, the MENA Golf Tour was created in 2011 with the aim of developing golf in the region. It is affiliated to R&A, the worldwide golf governing body based in the home of golf, St Andrews, and the Arab Golf Federation.
The 2016 MENA Golf Tour schedule:
March 22-25: Royal Golf D'Anfa Open at Royal Golf D'Anfa Golf Club, Morocco, Casablanca
March 28-31: Hotel Pullman Mazagan Royal Golf & Spa, Morocco
April 3-6: Sotogrande Masters at LA Reserva GC
April 24-27: Ajman Golf Championship at Al Zorah Golf Club
May 1-4: Ras Al Khaimah Classic at Tower Links Golf Club
May 12-15: Thailand event (TBA)
May 18-21: Thailand event-2 (TBA)
June 9-12: South Africa Tournament 1, Johannesburg
June 15-18: South Africa Tournament 2, Johannesburg
June 21-24: South Africa Tournament 3, Johannesburg
September 4-7: Dubai Creek Open at Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club
September 11-14: Shaikh Maktoum Dubai Open at Al Badia Golf Club
September 18-21: The Golf Citizen Classic at The Els Club, Dubai
September 25-28: ASCORP GOLF CITIZEN Abu Dhabi Open at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club
October 9-12: Dirab Golf Championship at Dirab Golf & Country Club, Saudi Arabia
October 16-19: Kuwait Tournament at Sahara Golf and CC , Kuwait (TBC)
October 23-25: Ghala Open at Ghala Golf Club, Muscat
October 30 to November 2: Muscat Hills Golf Citizen Championship at Muscat Hills Golf and CC, Muscat
November 20-23: Cairo Classic at Katameya Heights Golf Club, Cairo
November 26-29: The MENA Golf Tour Championship at Katameya Dunes Golf Club, Cairo

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