Dubai: Buoyed by the honour of winning the Asia Pacific Lifetime Achievement award, Jeev Milkha Singh returns to the Omega Dubai Desert Classic with the hope of getting the job done.
“The aim is to try and win the tournament if I stay healthy and injury-free. It will also depend on the mindset that week and how you deal with the pressure,” said the ace Indian golfer.
Singh received the prestigious award on the eve of the recent Royal Trophy, where he played a key role by beating Spain’s Miguel Angel Jimenez one-up to help Asia pull off a thrilling playoff victory over Europe, after the contest had finished level at 8-8 in Brunei.
“Somehow, I have this good feeling that I will do well in Dubai as I am striking the ball pretty well,” said Singh, arguably India’s best golfer ever.
He will join a star-studded cast here, headed by world No 7 Lee Westwood and defending champion Rafael Cabrera-Bello, for what he describes as one of his favourite events on The European Tour.
“Injuries did take a toll on my body. I no longer play as many tournaments in a season as I used to, but the good thing is that I have achieved the level of fitness I need to compete on the Tour,” said India’s most decorated golfer, who celebrated his 41st birthday this month.
“I have won tournaments in different parts of the world, but winning in Dubai would be special. Being an ambassador of ‘golf in DUBAi,’ the tournament is very close to my heart.
“Dubai is a fantastic place and is fast becoming one of the most important centres for world golf. I have always felt very good being there. In fact, I can call it a home away from home,” said Singh.
He is the son of legendary Indian athlete Milkha Singh, better known as the “Flying Sikh”, who won 77 of the 80 races he ran.
“My father is a great motivator and if anyone takes his advice, he is bound to excel in life,” said Singh, who has won 19 titles worldwide, including four on the European Tour, besides topping the Asian Tour Order of Merit standings twice in a glittering professional career spanning 20 years.
Mohammad Juma Bu Amim, Vice-Chairman and CEO of golf in DUBAi, commented: “We are delighted to welcome back Jeev, who is a well-established international star and enjoys a tremendous fan following.
golf in DUBAi is backed by Omega as the title sponsor and Dubal (Dubai Aluminium) as the sponsor.
The co-sponsors are: CNN, Drydocks World & Maritime World, Emirates NBD, Gulf News, Mercedes-Benz and wasl while Dubai Duty Free, Carpetland and Motivate are the patrons of golf in DUBAi’s drive to showcase the emirate’s vibrant golfing scene to a worldwide audience.