Abu Dhabi: Mena Tour is a great product with opportunities aplenty and provides a career pathway if you play well feels the Abu Dhabi-based Englishman Luke Joy, who has been moving his moves up the golf ladder in recent years.
Gulf News spoke with the 34-year-old on his golf career and his plans moving forward. Excerpts:
Tell us about your early golf career?
I was born and brought up in Dorset, England. I played golf for England when I was 18, and went to Drake University in the US for four years on a golf scholarship and then followed that with one year working for Wells Fargo Bank. I then returned to England and turned professional in 2012 off a +3 handicap and played a few EuroPro Tour events and other events where I could gain entry.
What made you make the move to Abu Dhabi?
My then girlfriend at the time and now my wife, Lauren, got a job offer in Abu Dhabi as a Personal Trainer, and I came over to support her. We knew very little about Abu Dhabi, the UAE or the Middle East when we arrived.
You are now attached to Yas Links, Abu Dhabi. How did that come about?
I originally practised at Yas Links, Abu Dhabi, when I first came over, with their exceptional golf course and practice facilities, when Chris White was the General Manager. In my first three events I played, I finished win, second and win, so Chris thought it was a good idea to invite me to represent Yas Links, Abu Dhabi, which continues to this day with the current management. I get involved with Member Days and a lot of activities when I am in town, a great club to be associated with.
You play on the Mena Tour, tell us about that?
I have been a loyal and committed member of the Mena Tour. It is a great product with opportunities aplenty and a career pathway, if you play well. With my performances on the Mena Tour, it has allowed me to play in the DP World Tour’s Dubai Desert Classic three times: in 2015, 2017 and 2018, the Dutch Open twice and in Morocco through a performance in Bahrain. I have just played last week in Thailand in the Blue Canyon Open in the final co-sanctioned Mena Tour event aligned with the Asian Development Tour, as part of a cluster of fours events, the Beautiful Thailand Series (BTS); where I finished tied 21st in the tournament and in the Mena Tour’s 2020+ Journey to Jordan Order of Merit I finished 17th. I have nine professional victories including two on the Mena Tour.
What are your immediate plans moving forward?
We have just had our first son. Lauren works for a local family in Abu Dhabi. We are very comfortable in Abu Dhabi, and look forward to the next stage in my career and our lives. My plans moving forward are to travel back to the UK at the end of this week to play on the Europro Tour as well as some Clutch Golf Tour events.
Tell us something else about you, that the Gulf News readers and followers may not know?
I am an AFC Bournemouth football fan and delighted we have just been automatically promoted to the Premier League. That is something to look forward to from August onwards.