Making his first trip to the area, the nine-time major winner was his usual energetic self upon receiving an invitation to compete back in February.
I am delighted to be invited to the Qatar Masters and look forward with great anticipation to visiting this fascinating country for the first time, Player said. Visiting emerging golf destinations and making new friends is always exciting.
The event should prove rather exciting also. In addition to the South African veteran, many of the European Tours best will be shooting for their share of the nearly $1.5 million total purse.
Seve Ballesteros, Sam Torrance, Colin Montgomerie, Darren Clarke, Ian Woosnam and defending champion Tony Johnstone are a few of the veterans scheduled to tee it up. As for the younger crowd, they too will be adequately represented in Qatar this week ' Adam Scott, Ian Poulter, Justin Rose and Arjun Atwal are all in the field. So too is Charlie Wi, the South Korean who finished fifth at last weeks Dubai Desert Classic.
Unfortunately, the worlds hottest player will be traveling back to the United States. Ernie Els, who took not only last weeks tournament in Dubai, but also the Genuity Championship on the PGA Tour and the Heineken Classic earlier in the year, will play in the Bay Hill Invitational in Orlando, Fla.
While he will be competing for a rather hefty first-place purse there of $720,000, the participants in Dubai are playing for a decent amount of money as well. Nearly $250,000 will go to the winner of the four-day event, about double that of what Johnstone won in 2001.