Thursday December 08, 2022

Pakistan hope to make presence felt in World Team Championship

By Our Correspondent
August 31, 2022

karachi: A three-member Pakistan team spearheaded by the country's top golfer Omar Khalid will be hoping to make its presence felt in the prestigious World Amateur Team Golf Championship teeing off in Paris (France) from Wednesday (today).

The 18-year-old Omar will be joined by Salman Jahangir and Yashal Shah in the Pakistani team for the World Team Championship where 72 nations will be competing for the coveted Eisenhower Trophy.

The Pakistani team flew out of Lahore on August 28 reaching Paris late on Sunday. The players took part in two practice rounds on Monday and Tuesday.

Omar, an A levels student of Karachi's Nixor College, is currently Pakistan's top-ranked amateur in the world rankings. Lahore's Salman is the most experienced player in the team and is currently ranked No.2 in Pakistan. Yashal, also 18, is also a college student in Karachi and is ranked No.3.

The four-day championship will be played at the iconic Le Golf National (Albatros Course) and Le Golf de Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche (Red Course) from August 31 to September 3. France will be hosting the golf competitions of the Paris Olympics in 2024 at Le Golf National, which is regarded as one of the toughest courses in the world.

Conducted by the International Golf Federation (IGF), the World Amateur Team Championships are a biennial international amateur golf competition. The women compete for the Espirito Santo Trophy and the men compete for the Eisenhower Trophy. The Eisenhower Trophy men’s competition includes 72 teams, tying the record set in Turkey in 2010 and in Ireland in 2018.

Each team has two or three players, who each play 18 holes of stroke play over four days. In each round, the total of the two lowest scores from each team constitutes the team score for the round. The four-day (72-hole) total is the team’s score for the championship.

The competition was cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and was therefore last played at Carton House, Ireland in September 2018.

The World Amateur Team Championships were held at Le Golf National in 1994, with the USA Teams sweeping both the men’s and women’s championships. Team members included 15-time major winner Tiger Woods, two-time USA Curtis Cup Team captain Sarah Ingram, and seven-time USGA champion Carol Semple Thompson.

Prominent players who have participated include Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Colin Morikawa (USA), Rory McIlroy (Ireland), Sergio Garcia, (Spain), Vijay Singh (Fiji), Colin Montgomerie, Paul Casey and Luke Donald (GB&I), (GB&I), Camilo Villegas (Colombia), Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen (South Africa), Eduardo and Francesco Molinari (Italy), and Martin Kaymer (Germany).

After hosting the Ryder Cup, the largest team golf competition for professional players, at Le Golf National in 2018, France was selected to host the 2022 WATC at the same course, along with co-host course, le Golf de Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche. France has already hosted two editions of the WATC - in 1994 at both Le Golf National and the Golf de la Boulie (men’s and women’s events) and in 1964 at the Golf de Saint-Germain (women’s inaugural event).

Following is the list of teams competing in the World Championship: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bermuda, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark (Defending Champions), Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Guam, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Islamic Republic of Iran, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, People’s Republic of China, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, UAE, USA, Uruguay, Venezuela, Wales and Zimbabwe.