Golf in the Arabian Gulf States
0 3 mins 2 yrs

Professional golf tours are being exploited for Sportswashing purposes in the Arabian gulf states. There is too much tournament golf played in the Middle East. These autocratic regimes are buying dates on the rota to promote their nations as golfing destinations. The local citizens of places like Saudi Arabia and Qatar do not play golf. Watching the televised coverage of these championships you do not see any indigenous locals attending the golf. There is next to no atmosphere and a feeling of falseness emanating from these tournaments. Sure, the players love the money – just ask Phil Mickelson.

Tournament Golf Tours Bought by Arabian Gulf States

Why can’t we have more tournaments in golf playing cities? Money!!! The tours want ever more money for their events. The players want ever more money for their time.

Golf is in danger of becoming an unloved elitist sport played in the rarefied air of the playgrounds of princelings.

Golf will lose its connection with ordinary working men and women. The gap between club golf and the golf tours will become a giant chasm. Golf on TV will be akin to video game golf with no relevance to real life matters. Too much tournament golf played in the Middle East is bad for the game.

European Tour Now the DP World Tour

The DP World Tour, formerly the European Tour, seems to be owned by gulf state interests. DP World is an Emirati logistics company based in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates. ‘Faceless men following the money’, this could be the mission statement behind the golf tours. The globalisation of the game of golf is a good thing on the whole, but let us beware allowing it to fall into the wrong hands. Golf is a game, which has emerged out of western civilisation and nations boasting democracies. Human rights are for all not just the wealthy and well connected.

Arabian Gulf States & Golf Sportswashing

Golf has always had an image problem, in that it is generally associated with wealthy, white, males. It has been seen traditionally as the recreational pursuit of the privileged classes. Things have changed a bit on this score with golf being played by more women, and in more countries around the world. There are Chinese and Indian golfers and tournaments flourishing. Lots more golf in Asia and parts of Africa is happening too. Tiger Woods was a breath of fresh air being a black Asian American global superstar of the game. There has been a lot of positive stuff happening in golf and it would be a pity to see it stained by too much of an association with autocratic states buying golf tournaments for Sportswashing purposes.


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