Sunday, October 04, 2015

Middle East North Africa Tour report

Paul Doherty moves atop MENA Tour Order 

of Merit with $16,020 from five events


Paul Doherty, a winner already on the MENA (Middles East North AfricaTour) within past few weeks.


By Viren Varma

DUBAI — Former Scottish U18 boys match play champion Paul Doherty has moved atop the MENA Golf Tour’s Order of Merit standings after posting a creditable second, highlighted by a course record-equalling 64 in the opening round of the Shaikh Maktoum Dubai Open at Al Badia Golf Club on Wednesday.
The talented 30-year-old Scot, who broke through on the tour with his maiden win at the Royal D’Anfa Open in Morocco earlier this season, has also racked up two top-10s, taking his earnings from the first five events to $16,020, ahead of the English duo of Gary King ($15,899) and Jake Shepherd ($14,445).
Also making inroads into the top five on the Order of Merit was Sweden’s Per Barth, who produced a dramatic charge coming home to win the Shaikh Maktoum Dubai Open, a good two shots ahead of Doherty.
England’s James Allan continues to lead the Order of Merit in the amateur division, accumulating 185 points, well ahead of India’s Rayhan Thomas as Alex Wills made strides on the standings with a top-place finish in the division at Al Badia Golf Club.
The MENA Division for the Shaikh Maktoum Golf Foundation Award that recognises the performance of the top three region’s professionals and amateurs wears a familiar look with experienced professional Faycal Serghini maintaining his position at the top of the tree.
With his compatriots Ahmed Marjan and Amine Joudar putting more heat on Serghini along with Mehdi Sassi, who won the division at Al Badia Golf Club, the order may change when the tour reaches its business end later this month.
The race for the region’s amateur title has also picked up pace with just six points separating the front-runners — Karim El Hali and Ayoub Lguirati — as the MENA Golf Tour travels to Saudi Arabia next week for the American Express Dirab Championship starting on Monday.
Order of Merit standings after the Shaikh Maktoum Dubai Open, the fifth stop on the 2015 MENA Golf Tour schedule: 
1.Paul Doherty (Scotland) – US$16,020
2.Gary King (England) - $15,899
3.Jake Shepherd (England) - $14,445
4.Per Barth (Sweden) - $14,090
5.Ross McGowan (England) - $13,000
6.Thriston Arthur Lawrence (South Africa) – $9,782
7.Zane Scotland (England) - $7,736
8.Stuart Archibald (England) - $7,177
9.Luke Joy (England) - $6,962
10.Lee Corfield (England) -$6,934 

1.James Allan (England) – 185 points
2.Rayhan Thomas (India) -127
3.Alex Wills (England) – 112
4.Karim El Hali (Morocco) – 85
5.Michael Harradine (Switzerland) - 77

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