25 May 2006
Good morning, ladies and gentlemen
Many thanks for joining us for this important Press conference. Important in the sense that golf in DUBAI, the promoters and organisers of the Dubai Desert Classic, are bringing another high-profile event to Dubai, something which will further add to the growing golfing profile of the city, and the UAE as a whole.
I am proud to announce that the first Dubai Ladies Masters will be played at the Emirates Golf Club, the home of the Dubai Desert Classic which has seen the likes of Tiger Woods, Ernie Els, Colin Montgomerie, Retief Goosen, Henrik Stenson, Thomas Bjorn to a name a few displaying their awesome skills.
And now it’s the turn of top lady golfers to rock Dubai. The Dubai Ladies Masters will feature an elite field of 120 golfers besides some of the world’s top players who will receive the sponsors’ invitations.
The Dubai Ladies Masters takes on added significance as being the first full Ladies European Tour event ever to be played in the Middle East.Dubai will be the latest and the 21st stop on the tour.
The presence of a galaxy of superstars, I am sure, will prove to be a catalyst in encouraging and motivating more ladies to take to the game of golf. We have many talented lady golfers on the domestic circuit, but we needed a tournament of this stature to inspire the youngsters.
The game of golf has really evolved over the past 10 years, not only in Dubai but I think, globally. But if we were to come back and look at the game in the region, it's become a very important game. For the City of Dubai, it's always been an important game -- and it's getting more important nowadays with so many developers going into the development of golf courses.
The sport has helped boost the city's tourism, and for a city, with a 1.2 million population, to draw around seven million tourists a year is not bad at all. With the Dubai Ladies Masters becoming another attraction, the tourist flow may grow further.
We are looking forward to welcoming all the players and we feel the Dubai Ladies Masters will open a new chapter in the nascent history of women’s golf in the UAE.
Thank you for your attention.