Nicholas locks start in Dubai

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Geoff Nicholas on the 18th green of Metropolitan during the ISPS Handa Disabled Golf Cup 2018.

Australian Geoff Nicholas will participate in the inaugural EDGA Dubai Final in November as part of the DP World Tour Championship of the European Tour.

Nicholas, from Sydney, was one of the six golfers selected through the World Rankings for Golfers with Disability to play the 36-hole event taking place on the same course as the grand finale of the European Tour.

Christian Hamilton, the national inclusion manager of Golf Australia, was not only ecstatic for Nicholas, but also that the event continues to emphasize the leading practices of golf for athletes with disabilities.

"We saw it last year at the Australian All Abilities Championship in Sydney, now there have been even more great tournaments around the world where inclusiveness is emphasized and of paramount importance," said Hamilton.

"The EDGA Scottish Open in addition to the regular European Tour event in July was also hugely successful, so we are absolutely happy that they will have another important event in one of their biggest weeks of the year.

"And what a chance for Geoff! He has had such a great year, including making the most important British Senior Open field, and this is a great reward."

The last two berths in the field for eight players are wildcard selections that will be made in the coming weeks.

In addition to Nicholas and EDGA Scottish Open champion Brendan Lawlor, from Ireland, the other first qualifiers for the Dubai event on November 22-23 are the English George Groves and Mike Browne, the Frenchman Charles-Henri Quélin and the American Chris Biggins.

European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley said: “I am delighted to welcome the first six players in the field for the EDGA Dubai Final, while continuing our work alongside the EDGA to give disabled golfers the opportunity to play competitive tournaments at our highest profile events.

“The EDGA Scottish Open in July was a huge success for all involved and very quickly everyone spoke about the ability of the golfers instead of their handicap. I know that will be the case again in Dubai in November. "

EDGA President and Head of Disability and Inclusion for the International Golf Federation, Tony Bennett, added: "Over the past five years we have seen unprecedented growth in golf for the disabled.

"More and more national golf federations appreciate that golf can be one of the most inclusive sports of all. Even the most disabled have the ability to play golf, participate or play golf.

“A growing number of data points to the benefits of a prolonged period in the open air, the importance of both health-promoting physical activity and social inclusion. Golf offers these options.

“EDGA applauds DP World and the European Tour for their vision to bring the EDGA Final under the closing event of the Race to Dubai during the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai. This Rolex Series event offers a beautiful setting to celebrate the skills of some of the best golfers with disabilities in the world. "

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