Sam Mullane (JGE) and Joe Jones (Wales), both shot level par 72’s, to co-lead after the first round of the 54-hole Abu Dhabi Golf Club Men’s Open over the National Course.
19 year-old Sam is the current leader of the 2022 – 2023 Emirates Golf Federation (EGF) Men’s Order of Merit with this event also being a qualifying event for World Amateur Golf Rankings (WAGR - Men’s Division) supported by the R&A.
Sam helped by a hole-in-one on hole four went to the turn in two under the card.
On the back nine a further birdie followed on hole 10 and bogeys on holes 14, 15 and 18 brought him back to level par.
18 year-old Jones representing Langland Bay Golf Club in Newton, Wales, is a Welsh International for both the National Junior and Senior Golf Teams and played alongside Sam in the first match of the day at 7 am.
Jones, had a five birdie – five bogey round with nines of 35 and 37 to join Sam at the top of the leaderboard.
The leading home golf club player is the 2023 Club Champion, Thomas Nesbitt (ADGC) who shot a two over par 74 to be in tied fifth despite a disappointing front nine of 40.
In the Net Division, Damon Mitchell (ADGC) shot a net 67 off an eight handicap allowance to lead by just one shot from fellow home player Charles Parks (10).
Damon De Villiers, Golf Operations Manager at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, said at the conclusion of round one, ‘We have had some excellent golf played here today highlighted by Sam’s ace. There is a lot of golf still to be played over the next two days and we look forward to seeing how the players manage over the 7,039 yards set-up tomorrow (Saturday). It was breezy today (Friday), let’s see what the weather brings over the weekend.’
63 players competed in the first round and there are 13 players all within three shots of the leaders with plenty at stake in both the Gross and Net Divisions to come over the next 36 holes.
The first tee time for tomorrow (Saturday) is at 7.00 am with the final threeball of Sam Mullane, Joe Jones and Jaash Parekh (BPGC) teeing off at 10.20 am.
Round One Gross Leaders (7,103 Yards, Par 72)
S. Mullane (JGE) 72
J. Jones (Langland Bay GC, Wales) 72
J. Parekh (Bombay Presidency Golf Club, India) 73
J. Wiltshire (AD City GC) 73
T. Nesbitt (ADGC) 74O. Craig (JGE) 74
R. Ahmed (Montgomerie GC) 74