Bahrain has continued its winning streak in the GCC golf championship by winning the 17th edition of the tournament hosted by Oman at Almouj Golf Club .
Acloudy sky welcomed the adult groups as they teed off for the final day of play but the Bahraini team stayed solid to win the championship for the 16th time in the event’s history.
In the individual play it was the Qatari player, Ali Al Bishi, who led from the first tee shot until the final putt. The final round was played in groups of three with the top players going out on the fairways last. By the 18th green Ali Al Bishi had carded the top score of the day, a 72, with Bahrain’s Hamad Mubarak and Qatar’s Abdul Rahman Al Bishi both 3 shots behind with a 75.
The main competition was the team scores and it was here where Bahrain showed their consistency with Hamad Mubarak, Nasser Yacoob, Ali Saleh and Sultan Abdullah staying ahead of Qatar in the top ten with second, third, fourth and fifth respectively. The UAE team sealed third place with the Oman team pushing them all the way but settling for a credible fourth overall. Saudi Arabia gave close chase as well, finishing ahead of the Kuwaiti team.
Hamad Mubarak was very happy with his team’s win. “We knew that when we came to Almouj Golf we had a challenge from some of the teams, but that we could not discount a single one of them,” he said. “The conditions here have been perfect for tight competition with each hole throwing a new challenge at us. We look forward to the competition next year where we hope to win again, but we know the other teams will be training hard as well.”
Ali Al Bishi was equally emphatic about his win saying, “The first day I went out and carded a 70 which I was very happy about and really gave me inspiration for the following rounds. I am very proud to have won the individual competition but as a team we were really hoping to beat Bahrain and take the group trophy back to Qatar with us. We’ll be back next year stronger and more experienced and we will give it our best. In the meantime I look forward to playing Almouj Golf again, it is a great course and offered many challenges over the competition.”
The competition ended with a closing ceremony presided over by HE Dr Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhy, the Minister of Oil and Gas in the presence of HE Shaikh Saad bin Mohammed al Saadi, the Minister of Sports Affairs. Also in attendance were HE Shaikh Fahim bin Sultan Al Qasimi (UAE), chairman of Pan-Arab Golf Federation, and Khalid Ibrahim Al Abu Nahyan (KSA), chairman of GCC Golf Committee.
The GCC Golf Championship has been made possible due to the work put in by Golf Oman, with support from the Ministry of Sport and the key sponsors who see the long-term benefits of developing a sport such as golf in Oman. The sponsors include Omantel, Etihad Airways and National Bank of Oman while Almouj Golf was the official venue sponsor for the championships.