Saudi Arabia to host first-ever European Tour event in three-year deal
Saudi Arabia is to host an event on golf’s European Tour for the first time next year, as part of its early-season ‘Desert Swing’.
The tournament, the first in a three-year partnership, will take place from 31 January 31 to 3 February, 2019, and will be staged at the Royal Greens Golf and Country Club in King Abdullah Economic City.
HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal, deputy chairman of the Saudi Arabia General Sports Authority, said: “This landmark agreement is a defining moment in the development of professional sport in the Kingdom and a clear signal that the country is ready to compete at the very highest level. As we seek to increase the number of young Saudis participating in regular exercise as part of our National Transformation Plan, events such as this help encourage people to build sport into their lives and their careers.”
Keith Pelley, chief executive of the European Tour, said: “We are very excited to be talking the first steps toward bringing professional golf to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the first time and I must thank His Royal Majesty, Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud for his vision in making this happen.
“I also applaud the Saudi Arabia General Sports Authority, the Saudi Arabian Golf Federation and everyone at the Royal Greens Golf and Country Club for their commitment and support. We are proud to be recognised as golf’s global Tour with tournaments in 30 countries this year alone and we are very much looking forward to adding Saudi Arabia to that list in 2019.
“We broadcast live coverage of our tournaments to more than 150 countries every week and we look forward to showcasing Saudi Arabia as part of that arrangement. I also hope this partnership will raise the profile of the game in the Kingdom and that we will see more Saudi players competing at the international level in the future.”
The formal announcement of the tournament, including details of the official event title and prize money, will be made in Saudi Arabia in May.