Oman bags GCC U15 golf title
Oman U15 golfers claimed the top honours in the recently-concluded GCC Golf Championships at the Ghala Golf Club while UAE golfers dominated the other divisions by claiming the men's and women's team titles. Qatar edged past UAE in the U18 division for gold at the meet that concluded on Thursday.
For the hosts, the victory of the U15 boys underlined the emphasis by the Oman Golf Committee (OGC) on grassroots development as it was the third U15 GCC crown since the back-to-back titles in 2014 and 2015.
Al Munther al Hinai, Ahmed al Wahaibi and Ayman al Busaidi were members of the victorious Oman team, which edged past UAE by a shot as it garnered a combined total of 522.
Oman’s Al Munther had the best four-day score of 260 to pick bronze in individual section while Ahmed had a score of 262 and Ayman shot 281. Saudi Arabia's Ali Omer was the individual winner with a score of 239 while UAE's Obaid al Heloo was runner-up with 251.
The 2018 GCC Golf Championships was the 22nd edition of the men’s championship, the fourth edition of the women's championship, and the tenth edition of the boys junior championships (U18 & U15).
UAE golfers dominated the championships as it won three gold, four silver, and a bronze in the team and individual events.
In the men’s division, the UAE team finished on top with a total of 911. Bahrain came second (913) edging Qatar on countback after the latter too totalled 913. Saudi Arabia was fourth with 920 and Oman came a distant fifth with 964.
The men's overall winner was Saleh al Kaabi of Qatar with 291, while Khalid Youssef of UAE was second, a shot behind. Last year’s individual gold medallist Ahmed Skaik finished fourth (299).
Oman's Azzan al Rumhy with a total of 310 was the best performer for the hosts and
finished eighth. Teammate Ali Hameed hit 327 to be tied at 14th place while the other two local golfers – Badr al Amri (342) and Ahmed al Balushi (347) – finished 18th and 19th respectively among the 22 participants.
In the U18 event, Qatar won the title with a total of 502, edging UAE, which too had a score of 502.
Qatar won the gold due to its third player’s better final round score. Bahrain took the bronze with 523 and the hosts were last with 613. Nasih al Barwani (303) and Mohammed al Balushi (310) were the Oman players in the U18 category. UAE's Mohammad al Hajri won the gold with a score of 238.
Reema al Heloo of the UAE was the champion in the women's division with a total of 254. She finished three shots better than Qatar's Nada Mir. Alia al Emadi of UAE picked the bronze with 270.
Later H E Hamoud al Mahrouqi, Head of Royal Installations in the Royal Court Affairs, gave away the awards in the presence of H E Dr Mohammed al Rumhi, Minister of Oil and Gas, Mundhir al Barwani, president of the Oman Golf Committee (OGC), Ahmed al Jhdhamy, the OGC vice-chairman, and other dignitaries from the participating countries.