RIYADH: History will be made next week when the Asian Development Tour (ADT) arrives in Saudi Arabia for the first time. The PIF Saudi Open, which kicks off next Thursday between December 8-10 at the Golf Saudi-managed Riyadh Golf Club, will have a whopping $200,000 in prize money up for grabs. Participation in the tournament will be open to ADT players as well as professional and amateur golfers from the Middle East and North Africa who are registered with a golf club.
As a result of Saudi Golf entering into a 10-year partnership with the Asian Tour, the tournament is expected to receive strong interest from golf fans inside and outside the Kingdom. The fact that the PIF Saudi Open will be contested for the first time at the ADT is confirmation of the strengthening ties between the Asian Tour and Saudi Gulf. Particularly as the 2023 edition of the $5 million PIF Saudi International powered by Softbank Investment Advisers has officially become the inaugural event on the annual Asian Tour calendar.
The PIF Saudi Open will also see the participation of a number of emerging players from the GCC and Arab countries, in addition to the growing local talents of Saudi Arabia in the national team, who have been growing in recent years, as part of Saudi Golf’s wider mass participation program to grow the game of golf in the Kingdom.
Majed Al-Sorour, Vice President and CEO of the Saudi Golf Federation and Saudi Golf, said: “All of us at both the Saudi Golf Federation and Saudi Golf are incredibly excited about the seventh edition of the PIF Saudi Open this week coming. Every year we host the tournament, it gets bigger and better. I am especially proud of how each edition gives Saudi and Arab golfers the opportunity to participate in top-level competition in their home country and power not only develop their skill levels but also test themselves and go head-to-head against players from different countries in the Middle East, North Africa and now the Asian Development Tour in an environment competitive”.
Managed by Golf Saudi and featuring a par of 72, Riyadh Golf Club is located 20 minutes from Riyadh. The course, opened in 2005, is known for its undulating terrain, wide fairways and well-kept greens.
Al-Sorour continued: “By organizing tournaments like the PIF Saudi Open, we hope to encourage and facilitate greater adoption in the game and give our elite golfers the opportunity to compete against the best. We therefore have to thank to our strategic partners the Asian Tour for helping us achieve this goal, as their involvement will result in the strongest field of players in the history of the PIF Saudi Open.”
The tournament, which will start on December 8, will feature the participation of the most prominent Saudi players, including the first and only Saudi professional player Othman Almulla, along with other National Team players: Abdulrahman Al-Mansour, Faisal Salhab and Saud Al-Sharif. There will be a lot at stake for the players competing as the PIF Saudi Open also represents a qualifying opportunity for the PIF Saudi International 2023 powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers, which will be held next February.