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29Apr2018 1606

Inaugural Saudi Arabia Golf Event Announces First Details of the 2019 Tournament

Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Paul Casey and Thomas Bjorn all confirmed for inaugural event

The Saudi Arabia Golf Federation confirmed today that the new European Tour event taking place in the Kingdom from 31st January to 3rd February 2019 will feature Dustin Johnson, the world’s top ranked golfer, and Patrick Reed, the 2018 Masters Champion, at the inaugural event.

With the goal to establish the Tournament as a leading event on the European Tour schedule and globally, the SGF used the occasion of the Royal Greens Golf and Country Club special opening event this weekend to confirm that joining Dustin Johnson and Patrick Reed in the field will be World No.15, Paul Casey, and 2018 Ryder Cup Captain, Thomas Bjorn.

The Tournament will take place within King Abdullah Economic City at Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, which is situated along the spectacular Red Sea coastline. The Club boasts a premier championship golf course, a state of the art clubhouse, a world-class practice facility and stunning residential and recreational facilities. Aiming to attract many of the best players in the world, there will also be a special focus on families, community, charity and junior development as the Kingdom looks to develop its golfing pedigree.

Further details on the event name, prize fund, event partners and other details will be announced in the coming weeks.

H.E. Yasir Al-Rumayyan, Chairman of the Saudi Golf Federation commented, “This is a very important weekend for us as we mark the opening of our new world-class golf facilities at the Royal Greens Golf and Country Club. At the same time, we are very proud to announce that our inaugural Tour event in January 2019 will welcome both the number one player in the world, Dustin Johnson and the champion of the year’s first Major, Patrick Reed.

Together with Paul Casey, we already have three of the World’s top 15 players confirmed, along with Ryder Cup Captain Thomas Bjorn, which is only the start of our player announcements!”

He explained, “We have ambitious plans to accelerate golf development in the Kingdom, with a special focus on juniors and families, and this event will play a key role in our plans. The Tournament will provide an important platform for us to showcase Saudi Arabia’s many assets to the world, from our golf courses and facilities, to our rich cultural heritage to our business credentials and our ever developing lifestyle and entertainment offerings.”

World No. 1 Dustin Johnson commented, “I am excited to make my first trip to Saudi Arabia and support this historic new event. It sounds like some amazing things are happening there, including big plans for junior and family golf development. It’s an honor to be part of Saudi Arabia’s golf journey from the onset.”

Recently crowned Masters Champion, Patrick Reed, added, “It’s been a crazy few weeks since I won at Augusta and so much fun. “I had not, at this stage, finalised anything in my schedule for next year but when I heard about the ambitious plans for golf in Saudi Arabia, I committed straight away.”

Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the European Tour, said: “We are delighted to have Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Paul Casey and Thomas Bjørn in the field for our first professional golf tournament in Saudi Arabia.

“Royal Greens Golf and Country Club is a spectacular venue, with world class facilities, and our players are going to absolutely love playing there.

“We are a global Tour and this is an exciting opportunity for us to play in a new country which has a strong focus on golf as part of its vision for the future. Our thanks go to His Royal Majesty, Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud for this vision, and to the Saudi Arabia General Sports Authority, the Saudi Arabian Golf Federation and everyone at the Royal Greens Golf and Country Club and the King Abdullah Economic City for their commitment to this inaugural tournament.”

The Tournament will be managed by IMG, a global leader in sports, events and media, on behalf of the Saudi Golf Federation.

For further information contact:

Michele Mair, IMG: michele.mair@img.com

About the Saudi Golf Federation

The Saudi Golf Federation is the governing body for golf in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, responsible for handicapping, development of golf as a sport and for delivering national tournaments. Based in Riyadh, the Federation is a full member of the Council of National Golf Unions and is committed to fully developing the game for all its citizens and residents.

About IMG

IMG is a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media, operating in more than 30 countries. The company manages some of the world’s greatest sports figures and fashion icons; stages hundreds of live events and branded entertainment experiences annually; and is a leading independent producer and distributor of sports and entertainment media. IMG also specializes in sports training and league development, as well as marketing, media and licensing for brands, sports organizations and collegiate institutions. IMG is part of the Endeavor (formerly WME | IMG) network.

About The European Tour

The European Tour celebrates men’s professional golf on a global stage. In 2018, the European Tour International Schedule will feature a minimum of 47 tournaments in 30 countries, including eight Rolex Series events, all part of the Race to Dubai.
Celebrating the global connectivity of the European Tour and Dubai, the Race to Dubai is a season-long competition to crown the European Tour’s Number One player, an honour which in 2017 went to England’s Tommy Fleetwood for the first time, and which, since 2009, has also been achieved three times by Rory McIlroy, twice by Henrik Stenson, and once each by Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and Luke Donald.

Since its formation in 1972, the European Tour has witnessed 26 Members celebrate a total of 53 Major Championship titles between them, enjoyed ten Members attaining the pinnacle of World Number One and has celebrated its diversity as players from 36 different countries have won on the Tour.

The European Tour also manages the Challenge Tour, which featured 27 tournaments in 21 countries in 2017, and the Staysure Tour, which featured 16 tournaments in 12 countries in 2017. It is also the Managing Partner of Ryder Cup Europe, the body which, alongside the PGA of America, administers golf’s greatest team contest, The Ryder Cup. In 2018, the 42nd staging of the biennial contest between Europe and the United States of America will take place at Le Golf National, France, from September 28-30.

The European Tour broadcasts live coverage of its tournaments to more than 490 million homes in more than 150 countries every week, generating in excess of 2,200 global broadcast hours for each event. It also enjoys the support of many of the world’s leading business brands with Rolex, BMW, Emirates and Titleist as Official Partners.

About The Royal Greens Golf and Country Club

The Royal Greens Golf and Country Club is an exclusive, first-class golfing experience set within King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia. The beautiful beachside 18-hole championship golf course, designed by European Golf Design, offers an unparalleled golfing experience. The majestic clubhouse boasts a panoramic view of the Red Sea and offers an exclusive members area with private dining, a board room, cigar room, library, executive business center and other luxury amenities.

With its state-of-the-art practice facilities, Golf Academy, Spa and array of fine dining options, Royal Greens is set to become one of the region’s finest sports and leisure destinations.