It was a brave effort but, in the end, ‘Chaps’ (Jonathan) Holland and his pet ‘Movember’ moustache Eddie (named after the English rugby manager) came up just short in the battle to win the Dubai Duty Free Golf World Cup. As I predicted in my last Blog, a night of revelry at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Village party offered Chaps plenty of stabilising pints but not so many stableford points the following day.
Perhaps it was just as well. Can you imagine all those pictures of Chaps holding up the trophy with what looks like a large and very hairy garden insect crawling along his lip? I for one am very happy that Movember is drawing to a close.
As I also anticipated, a strong challenge for this year’s trophy emanated from the Galway branch of The Moodie Davitt Report, Dermot Divot himself, who scored a stunning 41 points on the second day, considerably more it must be said than the two-day total of his Kiwi business partner.
It’s been a bad week to be a New Zealand sports follower in an Irish context and the relationship between Dermot and me is now hanging by a very thin green and black thread.
Having seen the Dublin-born Divot win the Dubai Duty Free Golf World Cup a few years back and now secure the trophy for the best score by a visitor, I’m worried how he’s actually spending most of his time in deepest, darkest Galway. Certainly, his prolific work output appears to indicate that he’s working harder than ever but could it really all be the ghost writing work of his wife Michelle while Dermot fine-tunes his short game on the green, green fields of Ireland?
As for me, I don’t need a ghost-writer, I need a ghost golfer, as my game is going backwards faster than an Alfa Romeo reversing down the Matterhorn. 13 points on the second day represented a new, desperate nadir after all these years of coming to this land in hope but not much glory. In fact, I am now officially recruiting for a ghost driver, a ghost fairway woodser, a ghost chipper (the best-paid of all roles on offer as my chipping woes have returned with a terrible vengeance) and a ghost putter. If you’re a ghost fairway ironser that will help you to be considered. All applications will be considered in total confidence. Terms (long) and conditions (miserable) apply.
Driving blips, thinned chips, and putting yips aside, though, what a couple of days it has been. The hospitality of Dubai Duty Free is on such a level that you not only feel treated and privileged but also humbled. Thank you to Colm McLoughlin and all his team who give of their all and then give some more. The sense of family among the very large team who staff the event is palpable. And for a few days all the players feel very much part of it.
Farewell then Dubai. Though only for now. Something tells me I will be back very soon. And anyway, I have a million dollars and a luxury car to pick up having entered the Dubai Duty Free Millennium Millionaire and Finest Surprise draws (below) on the way out at Dubai International. I may not be able to drive a golf ball, but I sure would look good driving one of these beauties.