Manassero hunts Abu Dhabi glory

Sport360 staff 13:10 16/11/2014
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Teeing off: Manassero will be competing in his sixth Abu Dhabi Falcon Trophy

Abu Dhabi’s global golf ambassador, Italian Matteo Manassero, is ready to inspire thousands of young golfers from across the UAE in January, when he fights for glory in the 10th Abu Dhabi Golf Championship.

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Manassero is the youngest tournament winner in European Tour history at 17 years and 188 days, and is taking his sixth shot at Abu Dhabi’s Falcon Trophy for a share of the US $2.7 million (Dhs9.9m) prize purse.

Now with four European Tour victories under his belt, the Italian is hoping to inspire the next generation of juniors golfers. “Abu Dhabi really is like a second home to me. I have spent a lot of time in the emirate and love how the Championship throws up so many unexpected results year after year. It really is anyone’s trophy,” said Matteo.

“Nothing would mean more to me than lifting the Falcon Trophy at the Championship’s 10th anniversary event and I am going to do everything in my power to make it happen.”

Manassero finished 13th in the Race to Dubai in 2012 and was the second youngest European Tour member in history after his idol, Seve Ballasteros.

“Matteo is a fantastic ambassador for Abu Dhabi and junior golfers all over the world,” said Sultan Al Dhaheri, Acting Executive Director Tourism, Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), which owns and organises the Championship.

“He has got a lot of fans in the region and we’ve no doubt they will all be rooting for him this January as he comes out fighting for a special Championship 10th year victory.”

HSBC Global Head of Sponsorship & Events Giles Morgan said: “There is a clear picture emerging in world golf that sees a changing leaderboard led by a new era of twenty-something golf Champions.

“We’ve had great drama over the years and I’m sure with young stars like Matteo, Rory and Martin in the field we can expect even more for the 10th anniversary event.”

Manassero joins world number one Rory McIlroy, three-time Abu Dhabi winner Martin Kaymer and Ryder Cup hero Justin Rose in the race for the Falcon Trophy in 2015.

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