The DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series signed off 2019 in style with Liverpool FC legend Jason McAteer and former British and Irish Lions star Simon Shaw MBE joining 180 local golfers and evening guests at Jumeirah Golf Estates to raise significant funds which will go directly to the treatment of a 2 year old Dubai resident Xander John Ely Siddaayao Ayalde who is undergoing treatment for leukaemia.
“It’s a privilege and an honour to be asked to come down and support the series,” said McAteer. “I’ve been waiting a while for the phone call as all the other footballers that have attended have told me how great it is which is a credit to the organisers.
“We all know the importance of supporting charities and especially one like this where everyone in their life is touched by cancer at some point. It’s a horrible disease that we can hopefully eradicate in the future but for that to be done it requires research that needs to be funded and that’s why we are all down here today to raise as much as possible.”
Shaw, who was part of England’s 2003 Rugby World Cup winning squad, added: “I am thrilled to bits to be part of this fantastic series. It’s always nice to be invited to these things and help out these amazing charities.
“I spoke to Mike Tindall about the event and he loved it when he came in 2017 so I jumped at the chance when I was asked to come out to Dubai. All charities need as much help as possible and this one is a worthwhile cause, so many people suffer from cancer and if we manage to help out and give them another chance in life and a better future then that is really important.”
The Mike Clark Golf Day was played alongside the DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series Grand Final where six winners from the previous three events – DHL Open, Fearnley International Open and DSA Open – were battling it out to be named champion and secure their spot in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship Pro-Am. Bill Taylor, who won the DSA Open in September, came out on top and will be rubbing shoulders with the top 50 players on the European Tour’s Race to Dubai as well as winning two VIP hospitality tickets for the opening day of the prestigious event.
“It’s such a tremendous event and I played really well, better than expected,” said Taylor. “I’m delighted that I won the competition because I love playing in them, I have played in all the ones that I have known about and had a really good time. I have been encouraging a lot of my friends to come to this event and take part and do their bit to fight cancer.”
After the final fun-filled final golf day of this year’s series, which also saw appearances from Boyzlife duo Brian McFadden and Keith Duffy as well as Ladies European Tour star Carly Booth, players and guests were treated to a delicious BBQ inclusive of two hours of free flowing beverages, where some fantastic items were snapped up in the live and silent auctions. This was followed by an entertaining Q&A with McAteer and Shaw who both reeled off hilarious anecdotes from their playing days at the very top of their respective sports.
Further funds are expected to be raised in the coming weeks with the help of Enviroserve, who set up a Bag Drop area for players to dispose of their old electrical or electronic items, which will be recycled or refurbished. All proceeds from the sale of these items will be added to the grand total of the money raised at the Mike Clark Golf Day.
The Mike Clark Golf Day was sponsored by a host of partners including DHL, Flash Entertainment, DSA Architects, Fearnley International Group, Eclipse, Fairmont Dubai, Golf Superstore, Sirocco, the ENTERTAINER, WME Consultants, Enviroserve, Al Laith, The Visiting Tailor, African + Eastern and Integro Search.
“It’s the end of another great series and we are delighted to see so many familiar faces coming back time and time again to play in the events,” said Worldwide Golf’s General Manager Rick Bevan. “We’ve helped young Randolph Palomar in the previous three events and he is on the road to recovery which has given us the opportunity to help Xander in the final event of the series. Mike Clark would have loved what we are doing and we can’t wait to get going again in 2020.”
Co-organiser Reza Sazegar, Managing Director of Sixteen10 added: “The growth and continued success of the DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series is a reminder of how many of us are touched by cancer during our lives. I’d like to thank all of our supporters for continuing to help us battle this horrible illness, whilst raising funds to treat an innocent young boy who has his whole life ahead of him.”
The DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series has now raised over US$300,000 since it launched in 2017 and has captured the imagination of the UAE’s golf and business communities as well as gaining support from a string celebrities from the worlds of sport and entertainment including Harry Redknapp, Mike Tindall, Michael Campbell, Teddy Sheringham, Fowler, Matt Le Tissier, Ian Bell, Dean Holdsworth, John Barnes and Ruud Gullit.