Ian Poulter missed the cut in Dubai
Ian Poulter missed the cut in Dubai Image Credit: AFP

While a number of players — including former Open champions Henrik Stenson and Shane Lowry, Dubai’s own Rafa Cabrera Bello, and Andy Sullivan — breathed a huge sigh of relief on Friday night as they just made the cut on one-over par at the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic, there were plenty of big names that were not quite so lucky and were packing their bags early after two rounds on the Majlis Course at Emirates Golf Club.

American No. 1 amateur Sam Bennett fell agonisingly short on two-over after his disappointing 76 on Friday afternoon. If he can take any comfort, he was in some auspicious company who also failed to make it to the weekend in Dubai.

Spanish golfing legend and all-dancing, cigar-smoking hole-in-one master Miguel Angel Jimenez missed out after a roller-coaster 73 on Friday that included five bogeys and four birdies took him to three-over for the competition.

Former Masters champion Danny Willett also finished three-over after a round of 74 that only saw only one birdie.

Scotland’s Stephen Gallacher, who won the Dubai Desert Classic back-to-back in 2013 and 2014, had little to smile about as he racked up six bogeys in his 75. Fellow Scot Robert MacIntyre was visibly unhappy as he signed for a 75, including a costly seven on the 18th.

One of the biggest disappointments was Ryder Cup superstar and UAE fan favourite Ian Poulter, who stumbled to eight-over following a nasty 78 on Friday.

Former Ryder Cup-winning captain Colin Montgomerie waved to the galleries with a smile after signing for an eight-over two-round score, knowing his place in history is already secured thanks to his achievements over the decades as he turns his attention to the senior tours.

Emirati Ahmad Skaik also missed the cut, but the amateur will have gained invaluable experience during his time with some of the best golfers in the world