Dubai: Six-time Major champion and golf course designer Sir Nick Faldo anticipates strategy as being the key to winning around his Dubai-based course in this week’s 2020 OMEGA Dubai Moonlight Classic.
A world-class line up of female golfing stars will plot their routes around the Faldo Design course at Emirates Golf Club, partly under floodlights. According to Sir Nick, players will need to put on their thinking caps to be in with a chance of contending in the Ladies European Tour (LET) event.
Renowned for great strategy and superb iron play during his own playing career, Sir Nick is well practiced in shot visualisation and approach play and spoke exclusively to tournament organisers about the course’s challenge.
“The players will need to think carefully around this golf course. Faldo Design has been working with the club on a few changes to improve strategy and playability, and there’s no real benefit to gaining extra length out there – anyone that tries that is likely to find themselves in trouble,” said Sir Nick, whose Faldo Design company is an Associate Member of the Asian Golf Industry Federation.
“There are some really tight landing areas and with the Wadi waste areas and 14 lakes, there is plenty to catch you out if you are wayward. From the tee the key is very much to find the right approach angles to the greens. Good iron play will be vital to get in the right spots on the big greens,” he added.
Played under the course’s floodlights for part of the week, the event is recognised as the only professional day-night tournament on Tour and creates an impressive stage when matched with the neighbouring theatre of Dubai’s skyline.
With three-time LET winner Carly Booth and Solheim Cup star Florentyna Parker among ex-Faldo Series junior players participating in Dubai, Sir Nick will be keeping an especially close watch on proceedings.
Sir Nick said: “Events like this demonstrate to me that the near 25 years of hard work with the Series is paying off, especially when I see the likes of Carly and Florentyna on the start sheet.
“We started the Series with a mission to help to develop ‘Tomorrows Champions’ and now with over 70 players on professional Tours, including eight of my alumni playing this week, I can only see it as a great inspiration for all young aspiring golfers out there looking to follow in their footsteps.
“This is a unique event, absolutely, and it will do a great deal to highlight where the ladies game is at right now.”
Sir Nick recently further demonstrated his commitment to growing the game among girls by signing up the Series up to The R&A’s Women in Golf Charter.
He said: “You can’t ignore the strength and opportunity in the women’s game right now and this event is proof of that. In the junior game, we’ve had five out of the last seven Series Grand Finals crowning overall champions from the girls’ categories, so they are really starting to show the boys something. It’s great to see the healthy competition between them. The future for the ladies’ game is bright.”