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The 23rd annual American Mission Hospital (AMH) Island Classic tournament is set to tee off in November at the private golf course of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa’s Saffriya Palace.
The event, which attracted 46 teams and more than 180 golfers last year, hopes to attract even more teams this year since this will be the first tournament since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Dr George Cheriyan, AMH chief medical officer and corporate chief executive, told GulfWeekly: “The Covid-19 crisis has made us more resolute and stronger, to remind ourselves that the human spirit is resilient and will overcome all challenges. The Island Classic embodies this spirit of playing the game for the greater good of quality healthcare for all, for which the American Mission Hospital exists.”
Last year, the event raised BD26,500 in cash and BD39,000 in kind from corporate and community sponsors, including GulfWeekly and our sister publication GDNOnline.
Businesses and companies can sponsor under the various levels, namely Diamond, Platinum, Emerald, Gold, Silver and Hole and enter teams to play during the three-day tournament from November 5 to 7.
The tournament is played in the Florida format, in which after all players on a team tee-off at each hole, the team picks one of their four shots (generally the one closest to the hole) and all the players move their ball to that position. All the team members, except for the person whose shot was picked, then play this shot and then pick one of the three shots to continue from, repeating the cycle until the ball is holed.
The nine-hole golf course where the event will be taking place attracts veteran golfers year after year, challenging both high and low handicappers with its demanding design and wily winds set amidst a beautiful course.
The teams are divided into two categories – the championship flight and the premier flight – depending on their handicaps. Due to social distancing guidelines and event restrictions, there may be some changes to the format of the closing gala dinner as well as the social aspects of the tournament, which will be announced closer to the date.
The funds raised support AMH’s community outreach programmes, including their diabetes, elderly care, autistic care and cancer awareness campaigns as well as free medical check-ups for labour camps conducted regularly by the hospital,
In the past few months, much of their outreach has shifted to online media including psychological support for people and children coping with Covid-19 and staying at home.